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Questions about owning Millipedes

Discussion in 'Myriapods' started by Pepsi, Jul 17, 2017.

  1. Pepsi

    Pepsi Arachnopeon

    So, I'm looking to get a few millipedes for keeping as pets, not to breed.

    I have a few questions about them:

    1) I'm looking to get 4 different species of Millipedes from Virginia Cheeseman, but I'm wondering can they fight or even breed?

    Ghana Speckled Leg (small juvenile)
    Madagascar Ringed (Juvenile)
    Red Fire (Large juvenile)
    Bumblebee (Large Juvenile)

    2) Will a plastic tank be suited for all those millipedes?
    The cage in particular is this http://www.portonaquapet.co.uk/-M36...PXRQIQsKkROfxAjcS17zJ821R-hVDqzC2YaAknQ8P8HAQ

    Can I use this cage for Millipedes or will I have to get a different one? And which?

    3) Since I live in the UK , it can get a tad bit cold...But my room is usually very hot , sometimes going up to 30 celsius in very hot days... Usually 20 celsius in Summer and around 15-10 celsius in Winter..Can I use a heat mat or something else in Winter?

    4) How often do I have to clean their cages?

    5) How often do I spray the cage with water to keep humitidy up? Or is there another way to do it?

    6) Can I handle those species without having to worry?

    7) Is there a good way to check a Millipedes gender?

    8) Can the smallest one be hurt by being run over by the largest one?

    9) If one is to fight, could they kill each other?

    10) Can they all live in that cage or if the cage is unsuitable , which one (cheap cage) would be suitable for all 4 of them?
  2. Arthroverts

    Arthroverts Arachnosquire

    Welcome to the hobby of millipede keeping!
    1) Nearly all species (if not all) of millipedes can be kept together without fear of harm, as millipedes only rarely fight over females, and as all the millipedes you wan't are different species, you don't have to worry. I have only heard of hybridization between different species once, and not with the species you wan't.

    2) That cage should be good, it just should be able to hold humidity, (is that screening on the top of the cage? If it is, you're gonna need to cover that up) prevent escape, allow a suitable substrate depth and allow the millipedes room to move without constantly touching the sides of the container or each other.

    3) That's quite a variation in temperature, just in the summer! I suggest you put the cage in a place where the temperature does not fluctuate so much. You should definitely use a small heat pad in the winter, just make sure it does not dry out the cage or heat it above 82F or 27C.

    4) The substrate should only be changed when the substrate has been mostly converted to frass, there is a major mite, mold, worm, nematode, fly or gnat outbreak. Otherwise just spot clean small mold outbreaks or leftover food.

    5) Just make the substrate is mostly damp and moist in some places. Spraying and pouring water in are fine. If all the millipedes are underground or frantically running around the cage, there is not enough humidity. A small water dish is another good feature to keep humidity. If you run a heat pad, pour water near (NOT on it, it could crack the glass) the heat pad. That will boost the humidity for a short while.

    6) Yes, you can handle them without fear, it can be quite fun! They might curl up and poop on you, and at worst, exude their defensive chemicals on you (wash this off immediately if you don't want stained hands for a few months, but none of this can harm you unless you're allergic.

    7) It all depends on the species, but round millipedes can be sexed looking underneath the sixth or seventh segment back from the head, for males the legs are modified into gonopods. It kind of looks like the legs are missing in that spot. I'll let someone with more experience elaborate more on that.

    8) I've never heard of it, and because immatures and adults are often kept together without harm, I wouldn't worry about it

    9) Again, they won't fight, and they don't have anything to kill each other with.

    10) I would suggest an air tight container that you can put pinholes in to keep flies and gnats out or a 2 to 5 gallon aquarium with a glass lid.

    Good luck!
  3. Pepsi

    Pepsi Arachnopeon

    I also (maybe a few months after I get the millipedes) might get a Flame Leg...could that live in the same cage as the others?
  4. Arthroverts

    Arthroverts Arachnosquire

    Yes, just make sure there's enough food and and space for all of them. I like that menagerie of millipedes!
    Have Fun!