Scolopendra gigantea acting strange

Plague

Arachnopeon
Joined
Jul 24, 2016
Messages
4
Hello,
Not sure where else to ask so I made an account. My pet gigantea, which I've had for more than 3 years, has been behaving strangely for about 5 days. Shes been rubbing her head on the ground, and acting more actively. Her legs also twitch a bit. If anyone knows whats going on please let me know, and if you need more information dont hesitate to ask.
Thanks!
 

LeFanDesBugs

Arachnobaron
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Mar 14, 2015
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563
Well, it looks a bit dry down there, does she have a filled water dish? A hide? A deep enough substrate? :(
 

Chris LXXIX

ArachnoGod
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I can't give you a honest advice because, unlike for Theraphosidae, where I have a bit of decades of experience, I'm pretty new to centipedes but, as @LeFanDesBugs said, they need a hide (and if the hide is a piece of cork bark, IMO the better. My S.subspinipes loves that) a water dish is essential, as well for (inches) of moist substrate.

This just for saying, because of course you probably have those in the enclosure.

But forgive me now because I could be damn wrong, but judging from the picture you posted, IMO the enclosure looks a bit small for a gargantua beast like yours.
 

nissan480

Arachnoknight
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Jun 28, 2006
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Its been a long time since I kept pedes and I cant remember the details and hate to be the bearer of bad news but this shoveling behavior is not good at all. From what I remember most dont make it. If there are no visible issues on the pede, your best bet from what I remember is to re house him. Fresh substrate...damp on one side, dry on the other and hope for the best.
 

Galapoheros

ArachnoGod
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3 years is a pretty long time, do you know how old it was before you received it? Might be just getting old.
 

LeFanDesBugs

Arachnobaron
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@nissan480 Yeah I didn't want to bring too bad news at first but this indeed doesn't look good..
Galapoheros, I don't wanna put into question your words (which are way wiser than mines :D) but S.gigantea, as they are amongst the biggest centipede species, must have a VERY long lifespan, right?
But after taking a closer look look at the picture, it's more than likely that this specimen is in a 10 or 5 gallon tank, and the width of those tanks is between 20 and 27 cm (googled it, and it's definitely not a 2,5 gallon xD).
And the pede is way longer than the side of the tank so it must be pretty big I'd say 35-40 cm so.. you're maybe right ! I don't know.
My first pede was a florida keys alternans which died unexpectedly after having the same behaviour :/
 

nissan480

Arachnoknight
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rumor is 7-10 years on the giants. I can confirm at least 5 years on one I had. I owned it for three, original owner I want to say 2 years and when it was imported it was already fairly large.
 

Plague

Arachnopeon
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Jul 24, 2016
Messages
4
I have a hide/water dish and I keep half the enclosure pretty damp, so maybe it's just the enclosure size? She's lived in there for a while though without problems, if it's too small would she just behave like this out of the blue? Regardless, I'll try rehousing her!! Thanks for all your guys' help :)

Also I think she's around 5 years old? Maybe older.
 
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Galapoheros

ArachnoGod
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Yeah those big pedes grow really fast, I raised several of what's called galapagoensis in the hobby from babies and they often hit 9-10 inches in 2-3 years. Also read what nissan489 stated but I remember reading 6-10, but I'd say some die young of old age ...well I should say "sooner" of old age, maybe 5 years, who knows. I've kept several of the bigger Scolopendra pedes and most of what I've had have about the same lifespan, it's around an average of 6-7. I polymorpha I had was probably about 9 years old when it died, that was the oldest one I've had.
 
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nissan480

Arachnoknight
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Jun 28, 2006
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yeah, with knowing little about health issues its hard to say. I recall the shoveling behavior, mites and the blackening of the legs from over humid tanks..I think. Been awhile haha. I always kept a extra tank fresh and ready just in case.
 

DreamWeaver8

Arachnosquire
Joined
Jun 28, 2011
Messages
132
I agree with what everybody else has been saying... give it a bigger enclosure, water dish, hide, more substrate and more moisture. Adding some isopods or a clean-up crew might be beneficial too considering potential mite/mold problems that come with high humidity enclosures. The very first pede i owned (mature s. polymorpha) did this for about a week before unexpectedly dying, looking back i believe it was a humidity problem but i cant be 100% sure. Best of luck and let us know how it all goes!
 

Chris LXXIX

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Off topic note.

Man, according to what I've read (as I've said prior I'm new to centipedes) the general lifespan of those... sucks! 6/7 years? Nothing IMO.

Why no 15/20 years like certain Theraphosidae? Unfair :-(
 

Chris LXXIX

ArachnoGod
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I couldn't agree more with you @Chris LXXIX I've always looked at it like they are candles burning at both ends.
Thanks man. You know, now... off topic for off topic, sorry, but I have a rant of mine about centipedes I can't remain silent about.

Seriously, I think that we, as keepers/community, know too few about those amazing animals in general. Here we are in this site, a worldwide famous one, yet if you go "deep" well in the centipede issue, you will notice that, unlike for T's, there's very few people available with good info and etc

There's great keepers like Galapoheros, Mastigoproctus, Elytra and Antenna (they write a book about) zonbonzovi... but not as much like for Theraphosidae. Not even mentioning the breeding of those (I suspect that here in Europe the 90%, and I'm kind now, are WC. Think that all the Scolopendra cingulata here in Italy are WC, since is a native specie).

Here the podium is: Theraphosidae, Scorpions, true spiders, Millipedes, other inverts, not so spineless wonders, then and only then, centipedes :-(

This drive me crazy :)

Why there's not that much, unlike for T's, of centipedes breeders? Why seems that a lot of keepers dislike centipedes? Why centipedes are not considerated like they deserve to be? :p

I'm happy with my Scolopendra subspinipes (my first centipede ever). I have never, never, and again never saw such a ferocious cold blooded & no mercy hunting behaviour before in 25 years of T's keeping. Name a 'Baboon', 'Haplo'... what you want.

Centipedes deserves more space I say :pompous:
 

Staehilomyces

Arachnoprince
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Well, when I had my first Cormocephalus westwoodi, I woke up one day to find it running non-stop frantically around the enclosure, and after I returned from a walk, it was dead. Much more recently, one of my prize Ethmostigmus rubripes centipedes suffered a similar mysterious fate. On the other hand, I would not be worried about slight increased activity or an abnormal amount of time spent on the surface. My Scolopendra morsitans hasn't burrowed as far as I know for over a year (no joke) and it's still with me. Anyway, good luck! I wish your 'pede well!
 
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