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Millipedes are invertebrate insects with segmented bodies and two pairs of legs to per segment. The verbiage “millipede” is from the Latin language and is composed of two parts “mille”, meaning thousand and “peds” meaning feet. However, the term “millipede” is a misnomer as these creatures do not really have one –thousand legs, despite looking as if they might. Many types of millipedes exist across the word and the average species of millipede have anywhere from thirty-six to four hundreds legs, with the rarest of them having seven-hundred and fifty legs. The largest of the millipedes is the African millipede with two-hundred –fifty six legs, and can grow to almost forty centimeters in length.

There are various different species of giant millipede, most of which are suitable to keep as pets. A couple of the more common species of pet millipede include the giant African millipede, and the Ghana chocolate millipede, which are black and brown in color respectively, but otherwise appear fairly similar to each other.

Considering a Millipede as a pet? Great! We have various different species of Millipede which are suitable to keep as a pet. Don’t hesitate to contact us for sales, safety tips and advice on keeping pet millipedes, or walk into our showroom for a great selection of pets and top notch service.

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Millipedes immensely enjoy dark, damp spaces, and can often be found in the wild by turning over rotten logs or smaller rocks. They consume vegetable matter from nutrient-rich soil that they move through, eating rotten vegetation and anything else that has a high nutritional content as they go. Millipedes are notorious for actively avoiding the light and will often hide under substrate as a result of poor vision.

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Millipedes are generally a docile species and do not bite when handled carefully and with respect, so don’t hesitate to pick them up and look at them. They do however have another defense mechanism at their disposal. The millipede’s body can secrete a chemical that is irritating to the skin, and can be dangerous if it comes into contact with the eyes or mouth. The various species secret chemicals of varying different levels of potency, so it’s important to research all of the potential millipede species before deciding on a purchase. When your ready, Petware House is here to answer all of your questions and assist you the purchase of that perfect Millipede.

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Giant millipedes make for great pets, but can secret a chemical compound if threatened. Generally speaking, they are safe to handle, providing that you are alert to the warning signs of unhappiness in your pet. The suggested way to pick up a millipede safely, the easiest way, is simply allow it crawl onto your hand, rather than physically taking hold of them. A frightened or threatened millipede will roll into a ball as its first line of defense, presenting a hard exoskeleton to the potential threat. Do not attempt to pick up a millipede who’s rolled into a ball, or worse yet, try an attempt to pry your millipede out of their ball can. Both can lead to a defensive secretion of chemicals, and so this should be avoided at all costs.

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Be sure to provide you millipede with several inches of damp compost as a substrate as they thrive in a moist, humid atmosphere. Also keep in mind that they can grow to 40 cm long and so their tank should of course, be long enough to accommodate them comfortable. As a suggestion, consider a tank that is at least one and half times the length of the millipede itself. The tank itself doesn’t have to be particularly high, as millipedes are ground dwelling, but shorter tanks should of course have a well-secured lid to help prevent any escape attempts.

Humidity levels are very important for millipedes and the substrate of your pet’s tank should be kept damp, but not wet, at all times and throughout the entire depth of the substrate. While they do not require decorative elements, its up to you if you wish to provide any. Some live plants such as certain types or orchid actually thrive under the same living conditions as millipedes, so you may wish to consider adding plants into your pets environment for extra appeal.

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Giant millipedes eat vegetation that is beginning to break down and decay naturally; they will not eat fresh food! A range of fruits and vegetables that are very ripe can be offered, and these should be left in the tank to begin the organic process of decay until your millipede is ready to eat them. Giant millipedes also require calcium to support the health of their hard exoskeleton, and you can buy a special calcium powder to lightly dust onto their food to fulfill this requirement.

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Millipedes hail from much hotter climates than the average room temperature, keeping them warm enough is key to proper health. An in-tank heating system mat, may be placed under the substrate is the best way to maintain a comfortable temperature for your pet. Different varieties of giant millipede have slightly different temperature requirements, although the average temperature requirement is around eighteen to twenty-three degrees Celsius, so not particularly hot.


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Millipedes are docile and nature-friendly decomposers that in the leaf-litter of the forests all over the world. They do make excellent pets and we’ve compiled a brief list of fascinating facts about them, right here for your reading pleasure.


Millipedes immensely enjoy dark, damp spaces, and can often be found in the wild by turning over rotten logs or smaller rocks. They consume vegetable matter from nutrient-rich soil that they move through, eating rotten vegetation and anything else that has a high nutritional content as they go. Millipedes are notorious for actively avoiding the light and will often hide under substrate as a result of poor vision.

Contrary to popular belief, millipedes do not have a thousand legs. The term millipede comes from the Latin words “mil” meaning thousand and “ped” feet. But both are a misnomers, because no one has found a millipede with one-thousand legs.

The vast majority of millipedes actually have less than one-hundred legs. The record holder for most legs has a mere seven-hundred and fifty feet, far short of the thousand leg mark.

This trait, and not the total number of legs, actually separates the millipedes from the centipedes. Turn a millipede over, and you'll notice that almost all its body segments have two pairs of legs each. The first segment always lacks legs entirely, and segments two through four vary, depending on the species. By contrast, centipedes have just one pair of legs per segment.

Millipedes undergo a process called anamorphic development. Which adds more body segments and legs. During this process millipedes are vulnerable to predators when they molt, they usually do so in an underground chamber, where they are safe and well protected from predators. Millipede hatchlings begin life with just six body segments and three pairs of legs, but by adulthood they may have dozens of segments and hundreds of legs.

Millipedes are by no means fast creatures and can’t outrun most of their predators. Instead, they rely on several defense mechanisms when they feel threatened. Such defense mechanisms include hardened back plates called tergites, a chemical disposition and a natural instinct to curl up into a tight spiral, protecting its underbelly.

The Millipede is docile critter and doesn’t bite, nor can they sting and don’t have pincers to fight back. They do however carry a secret chemical weapon. Some Millipedes, for example, have stink glands called ozopres from which they email a foul-smelling and tasting compound to repel predators. The chemicals produced by certain millipedes can burn or even blister the skin if you handle them. Always be sure to wash your hands after holding a pet millipede, just to be on the safe side.

Unfortunately, any advances for mating, made by the male Millipede, on the female, will be treated as hostile and she’ll curl up tightly, preventing any mating attempts by the male. What’s a male millipede to do? He needs a plan to loosen her up, literally. The male millipede might walk on her back, convincing her to relax with the gentle message provided by hundreds of his feet. In some of the species the male can stridulate, producing a sound that calms his mate. Other male millipedes use pheromones to arouse interest in him.

The mom millipede burros into the soil and digs a nest where she’ll conveniently lay her eggs. In many cases, she will use her own feces – her castings are just recycled plant matter – to construct a protective cocoon for her offspring’s. In some instances, the millipede may push soil with her hind end to mod the nest. She’ll deposit one hundred eggs or more in the nest and hatchlings will emerge in about a month.

Millipedes live a surprisingly long-life. They follow a simple motto “slow and steady wins the race.” They aren’t flashy or fast at all and they live a boring life a decomposer. Their conservative, camouflaged ways serve them well, as they outlast many of their invertebrate counterparts.

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Petware House carries a large variety of snakes, lizards, amphibians, and insects. We specialize in breeding the areas most diverse selection of Ball Pythons. Below are some of the projects currently in development. Stop by to see what's available now.

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All animals regardless of type, need and deserve our respect and will rely on our care. In the same fashion, the respect and care for your family, friends and your parents we need to do the same for our pets. Treating your pet with gentleness and kindness is the perfect way to show you that you care for it.


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Petware House is conveniently located at 7477 Lima Road, Fort Wayne, Indiana, which is just moments north of West Cook Road and a few minutes drive from the I-69. While heading north on Lima Road, you will find us on the left hand side of Lima Road, next to DAVCO Auto. We have ample parking for our visitors, parking for seniors, handicap and expectant mom’s. Additional accessibility is available for handicap and for the delivery of large items into and out of our store location. Come into our new showroom for the largest selection of healthy pets, pet food, pet accessories and let our friendly, knowledgeable staff help you find that perfect pet and solutions that work best for you.

Our store is conveniently open Monday through Saturday, 10 AM through to 8PM and on Sundays from 12 noon to 5 PM. If you have any questions regarding our store location, business hours or for general inquiries, don’t hesitate to reach out to us for further assistance.

Contact Petware House: 1 (260) 489-5151

 

 

 

 

 

 

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