Saturday, 18 January 2014

Centipedes

Once again the weather is pwp, checked the forecast with Alfy Taff The Morning Local Weather Butt via Facebook (check at your own risk). More rain on the way by the looks of things lol, not much chance of looking about again.

Lithobius forficatus
Means I'm stuck in, i've decided to mull over some of my Centipede records on Mapmate. Seems I've picked up 22 spp since i've taken an interest in them. Would very much like to focus more on these this year, mostly going over some old ground and try and fill in some gaps...perhaps a lifer or two. Below is my list so far, in some sort of order to how common i seem to come across them.
Lithobius variegatus










Henia brevis was the first Centipede i came across that i weren't sure of, so this went off to Tony Barber who kindly identified it as such. This one was found behind the Rangers office at Llandegfedd Res, not found one since. 

Lithobius macilentus also seen at Llandegfedd Reservoir and in the rubble of whats left of Aberbargoed train station. Would like to pick up on a few more of these, apparently all British specimens appear to be female.

I found L. borealis dead in a spider web in my green house, not sure how it got here, yet to find it anywhere else. The Graig opposite looks suitable so i'm assuming it may have come from here, where i search regularly?

L. curtipes, I've only found at Cantref Res, fairly easy to find here.

L. tricuspis seems to be high up the list, I actually only come across it in the Darren Valley. Found to be common in the two large conifer plantations and surrounding deciduous old woods as you drive up the valley from Bargoed. My first specimens of these where sent off to Tony for checking. I quickly got a reply congratulating me on my find, seem this was to be the second site for Wales.

Lithobius tricuspis
The rest seem to be readily come by, in the right habitat...to some extent. Its always worth checking over what you "think" is a recognisable species in the field. I've been caught out many a time with these. Those small Centipedes you think may be young of one of those larger types, often turn out to be something else. Thought i had something new recently, it turned out to be an odd Strigamia crassipes with 47 leg pairs. Don't want to say to much or put up any photos as i believe Tony is going to write a small note in the next BMIG newsletter.

Strigamia acuminata
Lithobius melanops
Geophilus insculptus





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