chinese giant centipede help


Old Timer
Apr 10, 2003
last week i purchased two centipedes over the internet and neither one has eaten anything yet and i am worried they might be sick does anyone know how to care for the chinese giant centipede . temp? humidity? substrate? food?

Mister Internet

Big Meanie Doo Doo Head :)
Arachnosupporter +
Aug 5, 2002

The first rule of centipede keeping is DON'T OBSSESS. :) I have personally witnessed an up to TWO MONTH aclimation period, so the fact that they haven't eaten after a week really means nothing. Give them awhile (2-4 weeks) to adjust to their new surroundings, and keep trying to feed them. They will eat when they are ready.

I'm not sure exactly what you mean by "Chinese Giant" ... probably a form of S. subspinipes. They are usually kept with higher than normal humidity, but it's certainly not necessary. I know of a couple keepers who have them on completely dry subtrate with just a water dish and temps in the high 60's - low 70's, and they are molting and growing just fine. Obviously, IDEAL conditions would be in the high 70's - low 80's, but it's not necessary... they will just be a bit slower, grow a bit slower, and probably not eat as much.

TRY TO AVOID making the "new pede keeper" mistake (I know I didn't) of DRENCHING the enclosure with mist. Wet DOES NOT equal humidity. A water dish that you overfill a couple times a week will be more than enough humidity... no need to soak the subtstrate. There are serious drawbacks to soaking the substrate as well.. mold, mites, springtails, and numerous other nematodes and parasites thrive in wet conditions.

As far as substrate, pedes seem to be able to live on almost anything (as with all pedes, try to avoid sand and anything with pine shavings in it) ... people use everything from 100% Peat Moss to 100% Vermiculite, to Jungle Mix or Bed-A-Beast... the choice is up to you. Just remember, the commcercial mixes (Jungle Mix, and BAB) are engineered to retain water, so DO NOT soak the substrate at all with these mixes... they will hold the water and cause your pede's legs to start rotting off. Trust me, learned that the hard way. My pedes seem to be happiest on a 50/50 peat/verm mix... that's kind of the de facto substrate that a lot of T keepers and pede keepers use.

anyway, that's my thoughts... ;)