With this home built flea catcher I was able to catch 50 fleas in one night. Yes I certainly did count them!
I have seen several other prototypes on the internet, but I wanted to share my experience with my results.
The part list.
Ground Black Pepper
LED Night Light
Toaster Over Tray
There are several flea traps on the market. Here is one such example. However they contain a sticky pad that you will need to eventually replace. I am adding this language expressly for the "I Could Make That" Contest. Please vote and share with a friend =)
This part of the experiment verifies that soapy water will work for the trap, but regular water will not. The soap reduces the water surface tension. Basically this trap wants to drown the flea, not let it glide on the surface of the water. Why did I use pepper? It is similar in size and weight of a flea. If the solution is correct and it pulls a small grain of pepper, then it will definitely pull down a flea into the trap.
Now that we know how to verify the solution. We take our lid, fill it with water, and squeeze generous amounts of soap into it. The ratio is unclear at this time, but with the pepper it doesn't matter. Simply stir the water a bit and keep adding soap until the when you add a pinch of pepper, it sink right to the bottom of the lid. The tray is here so that my cat doesn't drink the soapy water. I doubt it would happen because soapy water doesn't taste good, but it is here as a precaution.
My best guess on the water to soap ratio: 2 cups water to 4 TBSP soap.
Okay here you will see the trap all setup and in place. The LED night light is plugged in right above it. The fleas will jump towards the light, and bam they will sink into the soapy water.
Here are the results. I counted 50 fleas caught in trap in the morning. So I will count this as success.
On the left side of the picture is some of the pepper scattered about, but the rest are in fact fleas.
As a side note I must say I did see the very first flea land into the water, before I added to soap. The flea just glided onto the water, but once I added the soap the little guy couldn't glide on the water surface tension and sank to the bottom. I must admit that I did feel bad for the little guy. He did thrash around a bit just like any other creature of the animal kingdom might do if they were drowning. This is a warning that this method is non toxic and eco friendly, but it will indeed drown any flea that lands in the trap.