Millipedes

Millipedes

Millipede Pest Library Entry:

Class= Diplopoda

Common Pest Species:

Millipede (Eurymerodesmus spp.)

Greenhouse Millipede (Oxidus gracilis) aka Garden Millipede

Active Times: Nighttime (Nocturnal) for most species

Characteristics (Appearance/Habitation/Etc.):

Millipedes generally have a segmented flat or cylindrically long body with a Black/Brownish coloration. Despite their name meaning “Thousand Legs”, no millipede species discovered so far has had greater than 750 legs (Ex. Illacme plenipes). Leg number on more common species ranges from 34-400. There are around 12 thousand species of Millipede that vary greatly in size and shape, but they generally range from the smallest being 0.08 inches long to the larger species being over 14 inches in length. The distinguishing difference Millipedes have vs. Centipedes is that they are not venomous, have 2 pairs of legs per body segment, do not bite people, and some species can emit an irritating chemical as a defense.

Millipedes can be found in moist/wet/humid forested areas that are dark. Many species prefer being under leaf litter, mulch, and etc. around a home or on a forest floor when not burrowed underground in the soil. One of the most common in-house species of Millipedes seen is that of the Garden Millipede which is very small just under an inch in length. The Garden Millipede when seen in homes tend to do so in large numbers, indicating a larger presence of the species surrounding the building.

Reproduction: Females can lay anywhere from 10-300 eggs in one location depending on the species; usually choosing moist soil, dry feces, or protect the eggs by wrapping them in a silk cocoon. Offspring generally hatch within a few weeks of the eggs being laid, and are usually reproductively mature at the Final Molt Stage (Species Dependent). Millipedes have a 1-10 year life span.

Diet: Decomposing Plant Matter (Detritivores) such as fallen leaves (Leaf Litter), fungi, and etc.

Diseases: N/A

Notes/Research Sources:

http://www.clemson.edu/cafls/departments/esps/factsheets/household_structural/millipedes_hs18.html

http://media.clemson.edu/public/esps/pdfs/hs18.pdf

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Millipede

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greenhouse_millipede

http://soilbugs.massey.ac.nz/diplopoda.php

*Possible Pest Species as well? = Spotted Snake Millipede (Blaniulus guttulatus)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blaniulus_guttulatus

http://bugguide.net/node/view/97437