Currently viewing the category: "Centipedes and Millipedes"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Can you help me identify this bug?
Location: Chapel Hill, NC
June 22, 2016 5:36 am
I find so many of these around and in my house during the summer months. They’re maybe an inch and half long and dark brown with many legs. They have to antennae sticking out from the front (at least that’s what I think they are). I don’t know how they keep getting in or what I can do to keep them out.
Signature: Sam

Greenhouse Millipede

Greenhouse Millipede

Dear Sam,
Your image is not of the highest quality, but this appears to be a Greenhouse Millipede,
Oxidus gracilis, based on this BugGuide image.  According to BugGuide:  “Native to Asia, introduced to North America and found throughout the lower 48 states and southern Canada.” 

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What is this?
Location: Southern Ohio
June 18, 2016 4:02 pm
Found this creature in the woods, curled up in a ball. (Was around 1:30 in June).
Signature: Fallistar

Flatbacked Millipede

Flatbacked Millipede

Dear Fallistar,
We identified your colorful Flatbacked Millipede as
 Apheloria virginiensis corrugata on BugGuide where it states:  “Caution: Many millipedes with bright color patterns secrete a compound containing cyanide. Wash your hands after handling them and do not allow children to pick them up. ‘Millipedes are entirely non-toxic to humans and can be picked up by hand. Some secretions discolor the skin, but this wears away in a few days without lasting effect. Some large, cylindrical, tropical species squirt their defensive secretions up to a half meter (2-3 feet) and can blind chickens and dogs. Their fluids are painful if they get into the eyes, and persons working with tropical millipedes should be suitably cautious.’ ~Rowland Shelley”

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What kind of bug is this
Location: Nebraska
June 4, 2016 5:24 pm
Found this in my apartment. Do you know what this is?
Signature: Missydo

House Centipede Carnage

House Centipede Carnage

Dear Missydo,
This poor creature was so severely traumatized when it was dispatched that it is almost unrecognizable, but the large number of long legs indicates it is NOT an insect.  We suspect this must be a House Centipede, and they are much more beautiful alive than they are dead.
  House Centipedes are not dangerous to humans and they are nocturnal predators that will help rid the home of Cockroaches and other unwanted creatures.  We will be postdating this submission to go live during our holiday away from the office next week.  We will also be tagging this submission as Unnecessary Carnage, and we hope the next time you encounter a House Centipede, you will be Missydon’t.

It was in my laundry and when I took the laundry out of the washer it fell out. Didn’t even know it was in there.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Snail eating millipede
Location: Harpers Ferry, WV
May 23, 2016 5:24 pm
I thought you guys might like the picture I took this morning of a snail eating a millipede. Enjoy!
Signature: Barb

Predatory Snail Eats Millipede

Predatory Snail Eats Millipede

Dear Barb,
There is a similar image on BugGuide, but we think yours has more attractive subjects.  We don’t know if this is a native Snail or an introduced species.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Strange Insect
Location: Northeast Texas
May 18, 2016 7:27 am
I was startled by this little fellow climbing up the wall beside me. It is a very strange looking insect. It’s main body is about 1/2″ long. It has 28 legs and antannae on the front and rear.
Signature: Clint Cross

House Centipede

House Centipede

Dear Clint,
This is a beneficial House Centipede.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Centipedes?
Location: Southern California
May 16, 2016 6:37 pm
Image #1 was in the hallway at work, in my office in Santa Ana, CA on May 13, 2016 Baby Centipede? Image #2 (deceased) was taken as I entered my weekend retreat in Cherry Valley, CA. About a week earlier. I’m assuming is some type of centipede as well. Just wondering if either one is dangerous?
Signature: Thanks so much!! Betsy

Multicolored Centipede

Multicolored Centipede

Dear Betsy,
The critter you found in your office is a Flat-Backed Millipede in the Order Polydesmida, which is pictured on BugGuide.  The other image from Cherry Valley is a Multicolored Centipede,
Scolopendra polymorpha.  According to Charles Hogue in Insects of the Los Angeles Basin:  “The bite of this species may be painful.  Although there are no data on the effects of its poison on humans, it is probably harmless.  Contrary to popular belief, the sharp claws on the legs are not poisonous, although the last pair of legs is capable of pinching.”  According to BugGuide, the common names are Tiger Centipede and Common Desert Centipede.

Flat-Backed Millipede

Flat-Backed Millipede

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination