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A. Gigas.- The north American millipede?

Discussion in 'Myriapods' started by Gibson211, Mar 26, 2014.

  1. Gibson211

    Gibson211 Arachnosquire

    Hi, I recently bought these two millipedes from Petco labeled as A.gigas for 10 dollars each. Under the care information it said they were from north america, which I don't believe is entirely true. Here are pictures, hopefully someone can ID these for me and give me a care sheet or something.


    Any help is appreciated!
  2. Fyreflye

    Fyreflye Arachnoknight

    Here's what I'm thinking, but keep in mind that I am no expert!

    These do not look like A. gigas. Archispirostreptus gigas is one of the largest millipedes in the world, and they come from Africa. They are mostly black, with some pinkish color between the segments, depending on how you look at them. In your pictures here, these millipedes look brown and tan/gold.

    A. gigas are rare right now! They used to be imported from Africa, and stores like Petco would sell them. Then a ban on importation happened, and now the only way to get A. gigas here in the U.S. is from breeders. It would be very unlikely that a chain store like Petco would have them at this time, and definitely not for $10 a piece.

    Your millipedes do look large, and they are beautiful, but I do not think that they are A. gigas. My best guess is that you have Orthoporus ornatus, the Desert Millipede, which does come from America.

    **EDIT** After posting here, I saw your other post, and these were ID'd as Narceus americanus. So, I was off (like I said, not an expert!). Good luck with them though, and have fun!
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2014
  3. shebeen

    shebeen Arachnobaron

    What you have are Narceus americanus. They are found throughout the South Eastern US. They sell for between $3 and $8 on-line so I guess $10 at Petco is reasonable, considering you save on shipping (~$30). Judging from the first photo, you probably have a male and female. Profile or ventral photos of the head region can verify this. This is a hardy species and readily breeds in captivity. Females lay eggs once a year. The eggs typically hatch in late summer.

    ---------- Post added 03-27-2014 at 10:36 AM ----------

    If you're curious, here's a photo of my N. americanus tub. If you keep yours housed and fed properly, this is what you can expect in a couple of years. These are 1st and 2nd generation immatures originating from 4 adults. I actually had some die off because I underestimated just how much a whole colony of these guys could eat.

    • Like Like x 2
  4. loganhopeless

    loganhopeless Arachnosquire

    This thread helped me ID mine which I bought as an A. Gigas for $7 at my LPS, so thanks.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  5. Crazy!!...LPS selling this as gigas. : )
  6. Fyreflye

    Fyreflye Arachnoknight

    Indeed. I hope this is just a case of misinformation. I wonder where they are getting their stock?
    • Like Like x 1
  7. mukmewx

    mukmewx Arachnosquire

    What in the world is LPS??? Littlest Pet Shop???
  8. LPS=Local Pet Store :)

    ---------- Post added 07-15-2014 at 10:08 PM ----------

    What are they feeding on?
    • Like Like x 1
  9. mukmewx

    mukmewx Arachnosquire

    lol, thanks! I was doing a google search!
    • Like Like x 1
  10. shebeen

    shebeen Arachnobaron

    I believe they were feeding on a couple pieces of banana in that photo.
  11. Cool. Thanks for letting me now. :)
  12. Aquarimax

    Aquarimax Arachnodemon Active Member

    Pretty Millies! Most photos of this species don't show off their pattern as well as yours does.
  13. Smokehound714

    Smokehound714 Arachnoking Active Member

    I personally would have been furious. Such a common species being sold as another.. that's just pure fraud.

    Imagine paying for a porsche and opening the hood to find the engine of a chevy.
  14. pitbulllady

    pitbulllady Arachnoking Old Timer

    I've recently seen A. gigas selling at reptile shows for over $100.00, so paying only $10.00 should have been a clue that these were NOT African Giant 'pedes. It's my understanding that they are not being imported into the US any longer, so they are getting hard to find. Just a few years ago they were being sold for as little as five bucks, the real deal. Yes, this is fraud, but it's not quite the analogy you made, lol. It's more like paying for a 4-cylinder Toyota and lifting the hood to find a four-cylinder Chevy. Now, if the OP had paid the price that REAL A. gigas are going for and then discovered he had N. americanus, THEN that analogy would be right on the spot! I find LOTS of N. americanus in my yard, nearly every night, since they love old oak trees and we have a lot of those. The amount of food these can consume is staggering, to say the least, but at least they do convert it into a very rich fertilizer that plants like ferns and mosses really love!