beginner centipede


Dec 26, 2016
hello everybody so i was wondering what a good beginner centipede is I'm fine with a potent species I'm looking for somethings that won't get huge but won't stay small (if possible)


Mar 2, 2016
Ethmostigmus trignopodus, Scolopendra polymorpha, Scolopendra morsitans, and Scolopendra cingulata seem to be good options for your criteria.


Sep 16, 2015
Scolopendra polymorpha. Stays about 4-5" and venom is close to a bee sting.


Oct 6, 2016
Remember that all centipedes are very nervous and aggressive. They will probably bite anything that touches them. They are also very good at escaping their enclosures. Be wary of this.
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Active Member
Dec 25, 2014
There's a couple of IMO important things to say, especially when it comes to Scolopendridae. Things doesn't work like with Theraphosidae, where the differences, in terms of speed, venom potency, attitude etc between the general suggested for beginners NW T's and OW's are oceanic, and the range of choices for someone that wants to move his/her first steps in the Theraphosidae hobby are on an excellent level, with a lot of species always (mostly) available and ready for the sale.

That's not what happens when those are involved. No matter what "you" buy, expect a true escape master (seriously Theraphosidae are a joke, if compared) packed with a defensive attitude. This doesn't exactly happens with the NW T's always suggested (for a lot of good reasons) to beginners. Therefore as everyone knows, and like others said prior, a no escape enclosure is mandatory.

Second, choice and availability. Centipedes (sadly) aren't loved like T's are. There's not such an high demand for those. Here is a good example of that: we are in what probably is the most famous arachnids/inverts online community, well... how much T's keepers, including decades and long time skilled breeders/private sellers that never owned, doesn't own or like too much those?

Check online shops owned by popular and pretty skilled T's keepers, only very few has a nice assortment of centipedes. No one bother to sex them. Infos aren't like for T's. And why bother, one moment? They doesn't move the cash that T's move. Even at TSS, one of the best online European shops with (sometimes) pretty rare centipedes available, the T's VS centipedes selection is laughable.

That's one of the reasons that lead a lot of people to end with the cheapest and often available centipedes, the Asian ones (mostly S.subspinipes, S.dehanni. Btw IMO great). Good luck finding a S.cingulata... for that if you don't live in Italy, Greece, or other Mediterranean European nations it's a bit hard. Here even S.polymorpha is rare, sometimes.

Thing is, even a S.cingulata, one of the centipedes that technically (and according to the general consensus) are suitable for beginners, are defensive escape masters as well, and the venom, while not even comparable to Caribbean, South American, Asian and Oceania ones, still painful as hell, by far more potent than the average, chubby, pet lazy rocks beginner T's.

Another thing I can tell you, based on my experience with my S.subspinipes, is that their defensive attitude and way of react is completely different from the classical OW T's one. I don't know how to explain this well, but those animals are extremely intelligents, like a sort of chess players... they rely less on instinct like a 'Baboon' T's will, on that sense. They don't start to freak out, crazy like hell like an 'OBT'... they watch, they know when strike. They calculate their moves.

I work without issues of all sorts with/in my 0.1 enclosure, she is and remain "calm", or, if under, doesn't even bother to check. IMO they are the best, unpredictable predators ever when it comes to inverts, that's what trigger me :-s

Someone will disagree but I say that even if someone never owned a centipede but he/she had years of experience with fast, potent venom, defensive OW's I suggest without any doubts to buy an Asian scolopendra, for that, buy what you want, but the only differences are: size, colors, venom potency, because the attitude will remain the same: the one of a lovely, intelligent, escape master cold predator.