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Giant centipedes question ???

Discussion in 'Myriapods' started by TEAM BUGS, May 16, 2019.

  1. TEAM BUGS

    TEAM BUGS Arachnopeon

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    Is it possible for me to find 30cm body Scolopendra in the caribean area
    New to centipedes
    Also saw a 17 inches on u tube video wonder if it's true
     
  2. vyadha

    vyadha Arachnosquire Active Member

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    Yes, large Scolopendra are found in the Caribbean. That huge famous pede is indeed famously huge.
     
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  3. Scolopendra alternans is present in the Caribbean, and they can exceed 20cm body-length.
     
  4. TEAM BUGS

    TEAM BUGS Arachnopeon

    So what season should I go & where in the Caribbean do I start ???
    Also is there a such thing as Scolopendra caribbean ???
    Rumor has it 42 centimeters plus+
     
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  5. Greasylake

    Greasylake Arachnoprince

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    Yeah, maybe a couple hundred million years ago.
     
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  6. Scoly

    Scoly Arachnobaron

    A few things:
    1. Rumours about animal sizes almost always prove to be false, it's just human nature.
    2. There are different ways to measure centipedes, the official standard is "body length", which excludes the terminals and antennae. People who don't know this often confuse the measurements, giving you centipedes much smaller than you thought you were getting.
    3. Scolopendra alternans, which live in the Caribbean, have been known to reach 32cm body length (source: Thorsten Trapp) so we could well find some a bit longer.
    4. 32cm body length would easily give you 42cm overall length, so that may be the source of confusion, but in fairness it is likely a that whoever told you this meant body length but was exaggerating.
    5. There are biological and ecological ceilings on size, so even if one could physiologically reach such a massive size, it would most likely incur penalties in terms of its survival chances. So basically if we breed 1000's of Scolopendra alternans in captivity for several years, we may well get one which comes close to the size you mentioned, but it would be a freak. And the chances of you heading out there and finding one in the wild are pretty low.
    6. Freaks of nature do happen, particularly in captivity. There is a reliable photo of a 32-33cm Scolopendra dehaani, which is substantially larger than what the average one grows to.
    7. The 17" one you saw on YouTube (assuming we're talking about the same video) was a Scolopendra sp. "Peruvian white leg" which was a confirmed 36cm in body length, which equates to 14". It was an exceptionally large specimen, probably pushing the limits of what is possible (and in fact it died in a moult a couple of months after that video).
    8. The largest variant of Scolopendra alternans is the Hispaniola Red Giant, which as the name implies lives on Hispaniola, and Jaragua National Park is apparently the place to see them.
    9. You sound very new to centipedes, I am hoping you are just wanting to observe them in the wild, and not intending on trying to catch some and bring them back to keep them
    10. If you are thinking of doing this, bear in mind that:
      1. You are generally not allowed to collect animals from National Parks.
      2. You need permits to export out of the country of origin, and to import into the country of destination (you seem to live in the US, which has incredibly strict laws on what you can bring in, and you actually risk jail time).
      3. If you don't know what you're doing with regards to preparing these animals for the journey and packing them correctly, they will likely die in transit. A recent shipment of Scolopendra to Europe had 80% DOA because the collectors didn't know how to do it right.
     
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  7. TEAM BUGS

    TEAM BUGS Arachnopeon

    First of all thanks for the info & replys & yes I'M very new to centipedes
    Just curious on where do these people get the red giant S alternans beautiful !!! I should add +++
    Like to get a 30 cm body length S gigantea white legs & of course 25 cm body length S alternana red giant/all female some how ???