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Blaniulus guttulatus

Blaniulus guttulatus, the spotted snake millipede[1] is a species of millipede in the family Blaniulidae that can be found in Central and Western Europe (except for Portugal).[2] It has been introduced in North American countries such as the United States, Canada, Saint Helena, and Tristan da Cunha,[3] as well as Tasmania and Norfolk Island, Australia.[4]

Description[edit]

The spotted snake millipede is long and thin, with a whitish or cream-coloured body and conspicuous deep red spots (ozadenes) on each segment. The males are typically 8–12 millimetres (0.31–0.47 in) long and 0.4 millimetres (0.016 in) wide but are sometimes up to 14 millimetres (0.55 in) long and 0.6 millimetres (0.024 in) in width. Females are slightly larger, ranging from 12–15 millimetres (0.47–0.59 in) by 0.5 millimetres (0.020 in) to 9–16 millimetres (0.35–0.63 in) by 0.7 millimetres (0.028 in). It lacks eyes, and has short setae on the dorsal margin of each segment.[3]

Ecology[edit]

This species is common in gardens and cultivated areas in Europe and North America, where it has become nearly ubiquitous.[5] It feeds on sugar beets and other crops, and can become an agricultural pest in prolonged drought conditions.[3][6] The species spends 3 years as a nymph. Males mature at an earlier stage than females.[3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Jennifer Owen (1991). The Ecology of the Garden: The First Fifteen Years. Cambridge University Press. p. 319. ISBN 0-521-34335-6. 
  2. ^ "Blaniulus guttulatus (Fabricius, 1798)". 2.6.2. Fauna Europaea. August 29, 2013. Retrieved October 12, 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c d John Gordon Blower (1985). Millipedes: Keys and Notes for the Identification of the Species. Linnaean Society of London. p. 116. ISBN 90-04-07698-0. 
  4. ^ Mesibov, Robert (12 November 2013). "Millipede species introduced to Australia". Millipedes of Australia. Retrieved 14 November 2013. 
  5. ^ Hoffman, Robert (1999). "Checklist of the millipeds of North and Middle America". Virginia Museum of Natural History Special Publications 8: 1–553. 
  6. ^ Dara, Surendra (December 7, 2011). "Spotted snake millipedes in zucchini". Strawberries and Vegetables. Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California. 

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