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Getting A Vietnamese Centipede

Discussion in 'Myriapods' started by green_bottle_04, Feb 5, 2007.

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    ive been thinking about getting one for awhile now...what do you guys think about them? what would a LARGE one top out at? what all do they need as far as care goes?
  2. They're scary but fun. :D They can reach eight inches easily.

    Keep 'em warm, extra humid but not soaking (they dessicate easily), and give it something to burrow into. Make sure you have a locking lid that will retain humidity well. If you get a baby, they can easily escape from a KK lid.

    Good luck, if you decide to go for it!
  3. Cheshire

    Cheshire Arachnoking Old Timer


    I'm going to build on what you said. Please get a CB baby if you do decide to get one. Centipede breeding is a new thing to the US hobby and the practice needs to be encouraged. Best way to do this is economically.

    The best temp to keep pedes at is roughly room temperature. I keep mine slightly cooler than most people keep their houses (high sixties) and raise the temps to ~80* in the summer. All of my pedes seem to be fine.

    Keep them humid and have a steady supply of water availible.


    Vietnamese centipedes are known as scolopendra subspinpes. They can get up to 11" max (they usually top out at 9") and are fast...and extremely venomous.

    A bite from one of these WILL land you in the hospital and the bite is NOT affected by morphine. Be advised.
  4. Forgot to mention . . . the only fatality from a centipede bite (that wasn't caused by secondary infection) that I'm aware of was from this species. My first centipede was one and I only found out after I bought him, and so he got a lot of respect from me.

    Handling is NOT recommended; those few hobbyists that do should understand the risks involved.
  5. yuanti

    yuanti Arachnosquire Old Timer

    I've had a number of emperor and H. Spinifer scorpions over the past couple years and I decided to go with a centipede this time. My first is one of these as well and I'm very happy with it. Being it was my first centipede I heard how fast they were and that I didnt want to get bit by one, the morphine not affecting the pain is what really sold me on getting one ;P

    Biggest scare with my critter is that it was loose in the box when it arrived, which I did not really expect

    If you get one just be very respectful of it they can be very quick (i.e. in the blink of an eye flip around to attack prey).

    They also like to hide out so dont go poking around in the tank looking for it =)
  6. One more thing I forgot to add: they only need to grip something with one pair of legs to hoist their entire body onto it. Front or back.

    And if you do decide to poke around and look for it (gently), make sure you do it with a long stick. ;) But not so long that if you drop it suddenly it forms a ladder to the edge of the tank. I find a chopstick works nicely.

    We're not trying to scare you off, by the way -- we just want you to be well-prepared when you dive into your next addiction. :D
  7. awsome! thanks alot guys! i had already heard about their speed and venom potency. but as i have a p.murinus im acustomed to speed and venom toxicity. :D so i dont think ill have a problem with that. im picking it up this afternoon. it IS a CB pede. i dont handle any of my T's so there is no worries of me handling this guy either. is there a difference is life span between males and females? is there a way to tell the difference between the two?
  8. Cheshire

    Cheshire Arachnoking Old Timer

    No and no on the last two.

    You'll soon learn that the tarantula version of fast is completely different than the centipede version of fast ;)
  9. cacoseraph

    cacoseraph ArachnoGod Old Timer

    a like, clarification on centipede speed.... it is not that they are *that* fast running in a straight line... what makes them shine is when they are zigzagging and whipping their head and tail ends around... blur fast.

    i'd say that tarantulas might beat centipedes in a straight line. i have yet to see anyting bolt as fast as a 2-3" P. murinus. but for very short bursts of speed and direction changes i think the centipedes are tops

    oh yeah, and some centipedes can sort of hop in a panic. the way i have seen S. polymorpha do it is by whipping both ends in opposite and then the same and then opposite directions... they move very quickly in sort of random directions. it's pretty funny to watch.
  10. mindlessvw

    mindlessvw Arachnobaron Old Timer

    i too have seen "the hop" they do...check out the bite reports sometime...they are very freaky! ya these aren't so much speed as agility...
  11. Galapoheros

    Galapoheros ArachnoGod Old Timer

    Word!, haha. You just can't seem to react fast enough to move your fingers away when you use them to give the little dudes a little nudge. They can grab you with their legs real fast!, ..esp with those terminals!! I feel like a born-again non-pede handler after I was bitten by a big S. h. castaneiceps lately. But, son of diddly!, I'll probably do it again:wall: .
  12. this is ALL good info to know. by the way. what is that latin (scientific) name on these guys?
  13. Pedes are faster than ANY T, it is surreal. They are also the strogest things I have ever seen for its size.
  14. cacoseraph

    cacoseraph ArachnoGod Old Timer

    oh yeah, good point. cents can use their body shape to gain leverage. it is pretty crazy how much force a relatively little cent can exert when i am playing with them.

    Scolopendra subspinipes, is the sci name. there are two subspecies that are commonly available (S. s. subspinipes and S. s. de haani) and another that is less commonly available ((S. s. mutilans) and not typically sold as Vietnamese Giant Centipede). i think there is another one or two other subspecies (S.s. japonica, maybe. maybe another one) but they are effectively not in the pet trade.
  15. mindlessvw

    mindlessvw Arachnobaron Old Timer

    i remember when i was cleaning out the cage of my 9" guy and i tried to nidge him and that crazy guy pushed back! they are crazy strong
  16. Cheshire

    Cheshire Arachnoking Old Timer

    I haven't been impressed by my P. murinis so far and any of my centis seem faster. :?

    Maybe my murinis is just a fatarse.
  17. Selenops

    Selenops Arachnoangel

    I have seen the speed of many centipedes, yes they're fast and eratic sprinters. But my eyes can follow them at all times. Very quick.

    But try a Haplopelma longipes or Androctonus bicolor. They temporarily blink out of existence. The latter at short bursts of several inches at the most.
  18. the pedes are fast but I think it just has a more dazzling blur efffect to our eyes because of the shine and all the moving legs.. I would have to sayy that several of my tarantulas can move faster when they want to.. I can see the pede run around whereas the Tarantulas seem to teleport at times :D
  19. KyuZo

    KyuZo Arachnoprince Old Timer

    It's hard to tell who is faster, but i know one thing for sure is that centipedes are very powerful animals, a lot more powerful than any tarantula.
  20. 324r350

    324r350 Arachnoknight Old Timer

    One of my centipedes used to do that. The other one of the same species didn't though. It actually looked like a freshly landed fish.