Common Name:  Gibbula Millipede
Scientific Name:  Trachysphaera gibbula

Kingdom: Anamalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Diplopoda
Order: Glomerida
Family: Doderiidae
Genus: Trachysphaera
Species: T. gibbula

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Have you ever heard of the Trachysphaera Gibbula? It sounds like a creature from outer space!  The Trachysphaera Gibbula’s common name is a Gibbula millipede. The word “millipede” actually means “thousand-legged”, which isn’t really true, but it does have a lot of legs! It can be found in Germany.  Hopefully, as you read, you will learn some interesting information about the Trachysphaera Gibbula. 

 

This millipede is red, grey, and orange. They have long, big antennas. Most have 30 to 40 segments, and on each segment, there are two legs. A really big millipede in the tropics may have up to 50 segments and can measure eight inches. The reason why it is so hard to measure one is that they are also like an accordion, but tube-like.   In its young age, the color of this animal is white, and it is very small like a rolly polly.

 

They are found mainly in Germany, which is a very small area of Europe!  This class of arthropods has over 10,000 species of millipedes.  Perhaps because it gets so cold there, the millipedes don’t grow as big as they do in the tropics. Plus, some of the tropical millipedes eat other insects.

 

The eating habits of the Gibbula millipedes are dead leaves, grass, dead branches. This specific type of millipede is pretty much an herbivore. They are harmless scavengers that eat decaying plant matter.  Not like the centipede, millipedes don’t usually eat other animals. They have predators like centipedes, birds, spiders, and other animals. Its scent glands appear to produce a bad smell to some predators. 

The Gibbula Millipede is helpful to its environment.  It breaks down decaying plant matter and helps keep it in balance.  It is also a food source for other animals.  Its coloring is really cool and helps it blend in with its surroundings.  Even though it doesn’t have a thousand legs, one hundred legs are still a lot and it could kind of look like an alien!  In conclusion, I think this animal, the Trachysphaera Gibbula or the Gibbula Millipede, was very interesting and has a lot of cool facts!  

 

By: Garrett B.
Date published:4/13

Sources: www.ecyclopediaoflife.comwww.googleimagestrachysphaeragibbula, “Millipedes.” The Audubon Society Encyclopedia of Animal Life, pg. 404, 1986, Portland House Publishers.
Photo Credit: www.zipcodezoo.com