Many of us might use millipede and centipede interchangeably when we see a skinny bug crawling across the floor but they are actually very different. The “hundred legs” centipede and the “thousand legs” millipede do have some similarities when it comes to their biological relationship. They both come from common evolutionary roots that go back for more than 400 million years. They are related to lobsters, shrimp and crayfish but are strictly land creatures. They both have elongated, exoskeletal, segmented bodies. They both molt and extend the segments of their bodies and they can both live for several years. This is where the similarities end as they have some distinctive features.
Comparing Anatomy & Appearance of Centipedes & Millipedes
– The exoskeletal body of the centipede is flat and elongated. For the most part, millipedes have an exoskeletal body that is round and elongated
– The centipede has two, relatively long antennae that are segmented attached to the head. The purpose of this antenna is to feel around and to smell.
– The centipede also has two modified venomous kegs that it will use to capture and kill prey. These legs are located on the trunk segment, right behind its head.
– The millipede has two-segmented antennas that are comparatively shorter and are used as sensors. The millipede doesn’t have venomous legs.
– The trunk segments of the centipede each have a single pair of legs while the segments of the millipede each have two pairs of legs.
Defense, Mobility & Habitat of Centipedes & Millipedes
The centipede uses it’s two modified legs on the last segment of its body and the two modified venomous legs on the first segment to defend itself. The millipede had glands it uses to produce noxious chemicals that they will sometimes squirt to discourage predators. These glands run as long it’s the trunk. The longer legs of the centipede can move swiftly for short distances. This is good for catching prey or getting away from predators. The millipedes shorter legs can only move laboriously as it searches for food in soil and plant litter. The centipede will look for stony crevices, fallen leaves, rotting logs and the damp nooks in your home to live. The millipede prefers decaying vegetation. The centipede is is a predator and will feed on animals like insects, spiders, reptiles and birds. The millipede is scavengers and herbivores and will feed on decaying plant material and sprouting seedlings.
Centipede & Millipede Prevention & Control
Centipedes are more likely considered to be pests but millipedes are also pests when they infest your home. The best way to keep centipedes away is to lower the reason your home will be suitable for them. Centipedes need a dark, moist environment so reduce humidity levels in your home along with removing sources of moisture. Seal any cracks and crevices they will use to get inside too. The best way to keep millipedes away is to have good landscaping practices. Rake mulch beds on a regular basis and remove organic material that is decaying or dead. If you find millipedes inside then reduce the humidity levels in your home.
Occasional Invader Pest Inspections, Control, Removal & More in Austin, Round Rock, Leander, Pflugerville & Cedar Park, Texas
If you are finding centipedes, millipedes or other pests in your home, A-Tex Pest Management can provide you with a treatment program to eliminate the problem. We offer many ways to make sure they won’t return. Call us today!