Monday, November 16, 2009

Shongololo

Millipedes are known as shongololos in South Africa and are arthropods. Arthropods have two pairs of legs per segment (except for the first segment behind the head which does not have any appendages at all, and the next few which only have one pair of legs). Each segment that has two pairs of legs is a result of two single segments fused together as one.

The name "millipede" is a compound word formed from the Latin roots milli ("thousand") and ped ("foot"). Despite their name, millipedes do not have 1,000 legs with common species having between 36 and 400 legs.



Millipedes are detritivores and slow moving. Most millipedes eat decaying leaves and other dead plant matter, moisturising the food with secretions and then scraping it in with the jaws
Millipedes range from 2 to 280 millimetres (0.079 to 11.0 in) in length, and can have as few as eleven, to over a hundred segments. They are generally black or brown in colour, although there are few brightly coloured species.
For more information on millipedes, visit Wikipedia.

6 comments:

  1. That first photo is fantastic, micro shot and so clear, can see all the small detail...am sure you very proud of that capture...

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  2. I saw my first one this size in Amani when I was out over the summer - amazing what you can find if you have a root around in the leaf litter!

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  3. Great shots and thanks for the info, not fast moving but difficult to find.

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  4. I don't know if I would have seen that little guy down there to take pictures of him. Good eyes!

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  5. Great shot Jonker. I have just found a centipede in my office and will post it later this week. Have a great day.

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  6. When I saw the one in Thabazimbi it was longer than my foot! I have NEVER seen such a big one before! I love how they curl up into a ball if you touch them! :)

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