S.h.castaniceps...a must view thread!

Steven

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great info !!!

she allready got quite a history :cool:
awsome pede-mom!!!! :}
 

danread

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Hi John,

thats great news. It seems that there is definitely a time of year for egg laying, there is a fair few people who have just had new clutches, all around the same time. In my opinion it is almost definitely parthenogenisis, there are too many people who have had eggs laid long after obtaining a pede and having it molt repeatedly. The real proof will be a centipede raised from a pling up to an adult that lays fertile eggs, as i doubt sperm would be transferred whilst they are tiny.
Can you give me an idea of the setup you are using? What temperature is it being kept at, humidity etc? Do you think the egg laying it triggered by a change in temperature, or something like day length? Anyway, good luuck and i hope they are fertile.

Cheers,
 
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stemloop

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It seems to me there must be an academic or two, somewhere in the world, who would be interested in knowing this, and in doing a few simple tests, if material were available. 10 years or so ago, this would have been a tedious undertaking, but the appropriate molecular biological techniques to confirm parthenogenesis are pretty commonplace these days. DNA fingerprinting, for example, has gone from the mystical to the mundane. First, one would need some very basic genetic info about the species: chromosome number, structure, sex chromosomes, does meiotic recombination occur, a few genetic markers, etc.....and then all that would be required would be a fairly rudimentary lab setup. It doesn't take much to run a Southern blot.

OK, the more I think about this, the more I wonder if anyone dependent on grant money has ever had the luxury of caring. Still, I think it would not be ridiculous to freeze or otherwise preserve any dead specimens or eggs--I assume DNA could not be obtained in reasonable quantity from a molt?

Has anyone taken the time to examine published scientific 'pede literature on this topic? A very quick search turned up some peer-reviewed papers on other genera, and I would be a bit surprised if there weren't similar pubs for Scolopendra. How many academic investigators read this board? Many of us are fond of pointing out that, considering the state of the field, hobbyists can make legitimate contributions to academic/scientific knowledge, right?
 

danread

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Hi Stemloop,

I'm currently doing a PhD in molecular entomology/ecology. I've got access to lots of journals at my university, and i've spent a lot of time searching for papers on scolopendra. Believe me, there really isn't very much at all. In fact, it really is suprising how little peer reviewed work there is on scolopendra. I've found a few papers on venom, but little to nothing on ecology and reproduction. As you said, it really is an area where hobbyists can contribute a lot!
I think the main problem has been a lack of funding, scolopendra arent significant in terms of agriculture, economy, and because so little is know about the species, in conservation either.
One of my colleagues has got a travel grant to go to Hawaii later this year to colect samples to study food web interactions on the island of Kauai. I've asked him to collect me enough samples of the native scolopendra so i can carry out gut analysis of what they are eating, using PCR (which is the field i'm working in). It's not a part of my PhD, but i might get a paper out of it hopefully. There is nothing i'd like more than to study scolopendra, you could do years of work just studying Scolopendra subspinipes at a molecular level, and making phylogenetic trees, but unfortunately the lack of funding is always going to be a problem.
 

Swifty

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Congrats John! You've done some great work here, and what a break thru! I'd think about an article on this, you definately have enough photos and info. It sure would be nice to see one in E&A's Invertebrates Magazine....hint hint....
 

Bob

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Great !!!
I have three S.Heros coming in Friday. I was going to start buying these, try and sex them and then mate....might be better to just keep them seporate and hope for females!!

Bob
 

stemloop

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danread said:
I'm currently doing a PhD in molecular entomology/ecology. I've got access to lots of journals at my university, and i've spent a lot of time searching for papers on scolopendra.
Dan, it sounds like you should know about the literature, and I'm disappointed to hear there is so little on Scolopendra. I did a search of my own last night, and came up with 37 published papers on Scolopendra. 1 was about locomotion, and 36 were about venom. Roughly half were unavailable in English (mostly Chinese, with a couple Italian and one Russian researcher). That's my long way of saying "I guess you're right!"

danread said:
I think the main problem has been a lack of funding, scolopendra arent significant in terms of agriculture, economy, and because so little is know about the species, in conservation either.
That's pretty much what it comes down to these days. If you don't have a lot of money, or aren't costing somebody a lot of money, nobody notices you!

danread said:
One of my colleagues has got a travel grant to go to Hawaii later this year to colect samples to study food web interactions on the island of Kauai. I've asked him to collect me enough samples of the native scolopendra so i can carry out gut analysis of what they are eating, using PCR (which is the field i'm working in). It's not a part of my PhD, but i might get a paper out of it hopefully.
This sounds like a good opportunity. I'm confused, though, about where PCR figures into gut content analysis?? Anyway, good luck with your studies!

Todd
 

danread

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stemloop said:
This sounds like a good opportunity. I'm confused, though, about where PCR figures into gut content analysis??
I can give you a few references of the work done by my group if you want. Here is one by my supervisor that explains a bit, although some of it is now out of date.

Symondson, W. O. C. (2002). "Molecular identification of prey in predator diets." Molecular Ecology 11(4): 627-641.

Basically, we are using oligonucleotide primers designed to only amplify specific target species of invertebrate prey. For instance, a lot of the work is done on British agricultural systems (as that is where the funding is). Carabid beetles are used as a good generalist predator model, although work has also been done on spiders, parasitic nematodes (me), predatory flies, and now the hawaiian food web work. By designing primer pairs that will only amplify specific species of pest species, such as aphid, or slug, it is possible tell if that predator is eating the pest species in the field. This is done by dissecting out the gut (or in small organisms, using the whole body), extracting the DNA and running our species specific primers. A postive will be indicated by a band on an agarose gel. This is useful for building up a picture of food web interactions, and what species should be encouraged to improve biological control of agricultural pests.
I'm really enjoying the work i do, i find predator prey interactions really interesting. I'm sure it's where some of my interest in Scolopendra comes from! It would be great to apply some of these techniques to Scolopendra, as nobody knows for sure what they are feeding on most of the time, and it is sure to change at different times of the year. Also, because of the fact that the species are so unstudied, it is quite possible that some are extremely rare or close to extinction, so it might be possible to get funding. I know i'll definitely look into it when i finish my PhD!

Cheers,
 

LaRiz

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update on egg

Well, I guess we'll never know. She ate them only a couple of days later.
I suspect they were infertile. I guess I should look for a male.
john
 

danread

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I'm sorry to hear that John. Did the eggs look any different to previous batches that were fertile? I'm wondering if there is any way to tell early on if they are fertile or not?

Cheers,
 

LaRiz

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That time of the year...again?

Will I be digging this thread up every year? Anyway, she did it again. Last years eggs were eaten. This year, there aren't that many to begin with, unless I caught her in the middle of laying them. She's cleaning them as I type this. Same as before, she molted before laying this set and the usual bowl shaped depression, reduced eating, ect. before today. I'd really like for this set to hatch, but I'm not really optimistic about that.
john
 

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Steven

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That's indeed a small Hatch,...

But intresting she did it again :)





Can't explain it in English,... but the graphic i've made maybe explains what i think can be the case with reproduction of scolopendromorphs

click
 

MrDeranged

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On a related note, the last of the babies that I got from you a couple of years back was found dead last night. Not sure what happened, it was eating good and looking good. :(

Oh well
 

LaRiz

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Scott,
How big was it? I have two babies left from the first batch and they're a little over 6" now.
 

J Morningstar

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I believe Mr Internet diagnosed the cause, it is the same with most invert pets..."thenonedayitjustupandieditius" :rolleyes:
Sorry to hear of the loss.
 

cacoseraph

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holy crap!
this thread is amazing!

the pictures and info are must read for centipede person!
 

cacoseraph

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bump

this thread is way too cool to be on page 5 or whatever :)

for those of you just tuning in.... LaRiz has a well documented case of a S.h.c throwing multiple litters in multiple years without being re-bred each time!

amazing read!
 
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