Millipede against a white background - Keep millipedes out of your home with Kona Coast Pest Control in Kailua Kona

Millipede

Actual Size: ½ to 6 ½”

Characteristics: Brownish, elongated, and cylindrical

Legs: Common species have between 34 and 400 legs

Antennae: Yes

Wings: No

Habitat: Drawn to damp areas with lots of decaying organic matter. Often found beneath rocks or in old leaf piles.

Habits:

  • Will die quickly without a moist environment. 
  • Prefers dark areas and is mainly active at night. 
  • Rarely survives indoors for longer than a couple of days.
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Millipedes in Kailua Kona

Millipedes are fascinating arthropods known for their distinctive appearance and numerous legs. Despite their name, millipedes do not have a thousand legs; the number typically ranges from a few dozen to over 400, depending on the species. These elongated arthropods have cylindrical bodies with two pairs of legs per body segment, distinguishing them from centipedes, which have only one pair per segment. Millipedes are usually brown or black, and some species have protective chemicals that can produce a mild, unpleasant odor when they feel threatened.

Millipede Habitat

Commonly found in various habitats such as forests or gardens, millipedes are drawn to damp areas with decaying organic matter. They play a crucial ecological role as decomposers, feeding on dead plant material and contributing to the breakdown of organic debris. Millipedes thrive in moist environments and are often encountered in soil, leaf litter, and under rocks or logs. Some species are also known to burrow into the soil.

Millipede Behaviors, Threats, or Dangers

Millipedes are generally harmless to humans and serve a beneficial purpose in ecosystems by aiding in the decomposition of organic matter. They do not bite or sting, and most species are not capable of causing harm. However, when threatened, some millipedes can secrete a liquid containing chemicals that may cause skin irritation in humans. It’s important to handle millipedes with care and avoid direct contact with the secretions. In certain regions, particularly during periods of high population density, millipedes may migrate in large numbers, creating temporary inconveniences for homeowners.

If you are dealing with excess millipedes in your Kailua Kona property, contact your local exterminators.