General23 Aug 2006 09:19 am

A few weekends ago Mike, my boyfriend, and I stopped at a small farm outside of Red Deer in central Alberta to check out some invertebrates. We went into a barn and spent a good hour poring over hundreds of Ziploc containers full of mother scorpions, tarantulas and centipedes. There were also pill bottles full of baby spiders. It was amazing.
Centipedes were originally illegal in Canada, but recently have become popular pets, and have proven difficult to find. When we arrived, the proprietor had a larger centipede and a baby centipede that Mike took. As well, he also picked up a tiny 1″ curly hair tarantula. The baby centipede unfortunately died the next day, but Bill Kunstler (the centipede) and Sparkles the tarantula are doing well. And yesterday, Mike received a new centipede (as yet unnamed) from Montreal via overnight shipping. It’s terribly exciting, and they are far less creepy and far more interesting than you might think.

This is Bill. He is sleeping in the corner, his head tucked up under him. He typically burrows to sleep, leaving just his antennae sticking out. He’s pretty strange acting, very epileptical, almost, tossing himself around his home, heaving about like a drunken sailor. He’s not that great at hunting, but acts quickly when the time is right.

This is the new pede, nameless for now. We think it might be female. She acts very different from Bill thus far, very slow and languid… yet quick to dart under her cork bark hide, or to lunge at a cricket. Her antennae are especially sensitive and move about like small fingers, testing the ground around her.

One Response to “New Family Members”

  1. on 17 Sep 2006 at 11:16 pm Scratch

    Ok… interesting indeed – but – of all the creepy crawlies in the world. Centipedes?

    These are the stuff of serious nightmares for me…. if there was one single point to be made that would keep me from crawling out of my skin – what would it be?