Arthropod – Identification

Testing Indications

This Test Information Sheet is for suspected lice fleas, bedbugs, maggots or mites removed from a human or vicinity.

Tick Identification is performed for surveillance purposes only. For Tick Identification information, refer to the Tick ID – Surveillance Test Information Sheet.

Specimen Collection and Handling

Specimen Requirements

Test Requested Required Requisition(s) Specimen Type Minimum Volume Collection Kit

Arthropod ID1



Sterile container

Submission and Collection Notes


The suspected organism may be included under the ‘Test Description’


Indicate site of collection of the arthropod and any relevant clinical information for the patient.


The PHO laboratory will no longer identify arthropods from a non-human source. These arthropods should be referred to the Pest diagnostic Clinic at the University of Guelph.

Storage and Transport

Place specimen in a container and place in a biohazard bag and seal. Ensure that the container is labelled with the patient's full name and one other unique identifier such as date of birth or health card number, and that it matches the information on the requisition.

Requisitions and Kit Ordering

Test Frequency and Turnaround Time (TAT)

Turnaround time is up to one (1) week

Test Methods

Arthropods are identified by Microscopy


Results are reported to the ordering physician or health care provider as indicated on the requisition.

Accepted Arthropods

The following arthropods (removed from a human or vicinity) will continue to be identified at PHO laboratory:

  • suspected lice fleas
  • bedbugs
  • maggots
  • mites
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Laboratory Services

Updated 20 July 2020