Sphaerotherium hippocastaneum

Gillian

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Hi all,
I'm just dying to get these..(Malagasy Emerald Green Pill Millipede). However, I have found out the following, which is keeping me from getting them:
* Very high mortality rate (max lifespan is perhaps several months). This could very possibly be due to the fact that, most appearing the market are already close to finishing their lifespans.
* In most cases, predicting and, providing the optimum conditions for these is next to impossible, being that so little is known.

While many, more hardened by animal lifespans may view the mortality rate as a learning experience for more generations, I can't have that. To take something into my captive care, in essence, take it from its natural habitat, and then have it die, is for lack of a better word, painful.
So, along those lines, does anyone have any suggestions for these guys?
Peace,
Gillian
 

Cronoss

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Hi,
a few years ago i had 50 of the giant emerald pill millipedes.
i tryed every thing to keep them alive and breed them.and i have talked to maney people that have tryed as well.
the longest i have had them live is 8 months.
they ranged from the size of a marble to the size of a golf ball.
I colleced moss,fungis,leaves from every type of tree,plant,dead and alive,in my area.nothing worked.
i also tryed different kinds of animal food.
they ate some of the food but still died.
I'm pretty sure that they need eather a plant or fungis from there native land.

I have bred many millipedes,centipedes,scorpions,and tarantulas.
but no luck with these.

Good luck
Bryan
 

Gillian

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Bryan,
Thanks for the answer. I, as well, have heard that there is a train of thought that perhaps there is something from their native clime that they require. Darn. However, I will not give up..:)
Peace,
Gillian
 

MrDeranged

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There's also been talk that there is certain gut fauna that they may have that probably dies during the shipping process and that they are not able to properly digest food without it causing them to slowly starve to death.

How's that for a run on sentence??? :)

Scott
 

Gillian

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Scott,
As for the run on..I can just see my college English professor now; fainting..*lol* To the millies..I just remembered about that intestinal fauna. Now, this has become a quest, for me. I WILL find out about these, and will keep them alive. True, they are being sold, but I won't get any, until I can keep them alive.. Also, another thought; could these just be short-lived?
Peace,
Gillian
 

Cronoss

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Originally posted by Gillian
Scott,
could these just be short-lived?
Peace,
Gillian
Idon't think so cause i've had some that were very small.
they get pretty big so i think they live 5--10 yrs.
i think i read that somewhere
Bryan

p.s. the gut fauna is a very good theory.
but why do they loose it during shipping?
 

Gillian

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Bryan,
Hmmm..thanks. This is true, why do they lose the gut fauna? Could it go back to diet? Some crucial foodstuff that keeps the fauna alive?
Peace,
Gillian
 

Code Monkey

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The rationale I saw put forth was that the temps are just too high that they are exposed to.
 

Gillian

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Code,
Thanks..Unfortunately, this may never get corerected, as, in order to turn a profit, its pack a lot per container, and don't really be particular about conditions during transit. I have started a notebook, on the info for these.
Peace,
Gillian
 

Wade

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Gillian-

One idea that may be worth looking into is coming up with a way to re-introduce the proper gut fauna. I don't know if their's is specific to that species, but it might be worth a shot. Insects such as termites and many beetles/larvae also feed on celulose (wood). Including some of these in with the pill millis may give them the opprotunity to replenish their supply by eating the feces of other wood eating creatures.

That's just food for thought if you do decide to try working with them. I have no idea if it'll work!

Wade
 

Gillian

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Wade,
Thanks! Hmmm..let's just hope the termite won't get loose. Hmmmm...40 some year old house, with wooden floors..EEEK!
Peace,
Gillian
 

Wade

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Gillian-

The risk of termites getting loose and damaging your house is quite minimal. The type you'd find aroun you are probably not the type that can feed on dry wood anyway, and most will not live long exposed. Is there much of a termite problem in New Mexico?

Annother good insect to consider as a pill millipede roomie might be he bess beetle, aka the patent leather beetle, Odontotaenius disjunctus. These shiny black beetles feed on rotten wood and also posess the gut sybionts to digest celulose. Totally harmless, and fun to keep besides.

Wade
 

Gillian

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Wade,
Yes, there is a bad termite prob here. My parents had to fork over I don't know how much, due to termite damage on their house. You know what? You've given me an idea..my next bug project..*g*I would think, I'd get the Bess Beetles first, and let them live in the enclosure for awhile..so that there's an adequate supply of feces in there. Besides, Bess beetles are so damn cute!
Thank you...
Gillian
 
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