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Trachypauropus britannicus

Trachypauropus britannicus

Trunk : Arthropod (arthropoda)
Sub-stem : Trachea (Tracheata)
Superclass : Millipede (Myriapoda)
Class : Pauropoda (Pauropoda)
Order : Tetramerocerata
Family : Eurypauropodidae
Scientific name
Kenyon , 1895

The Eurypauropodidae are a family of millipedes from the class of the little peoples (Pauropoda). One species of the family was first discovered by J. Ryder in East Fairmount Park in Philadelphia ( USA ) in 1879 . This type species is Eurypauropus spinosus . Since then, around 25 other species have been found worldwide. The small body size of 0.8 to 1.5 mm, the hidden way of life and complex examination methods have meant that only a few specialists deal with this group of animals.


The most striking body feature are the six large back plates (Tegite) that protrude over the body on all sides. The nine segments, each with a pair of striding legs, are covered by the tergites.

Way of life

This family of millipedes is particularly widespread in the mixed deciduous forests of the colline and montane altitudes. Most often, the animals are found on the underside of pieces of wood and bark at the bottom of the woods. Occasionally they are also found in forest soils with waterlogging and in the Förna pure spruce stands. In southern Europe they are found mainly in blackberry bushes and under the bark of olive trees.


According to Schuster and Hasenhütl (1983) there is an indirect sperm transfer in the Eurypauropodinae in that the male creates a complex web on uneven ground. In the case of Trachypauropus latzeli , this consists of a support net on which a sperm drop is placed, as well as a carrier and a cover net, both of which have a carrying and support function. It is assumed that the web of spider matophores are species-specific and that the females should therefore be able to distinguish a web of their own species from that of other species. It is still unclear whether fragrances that may be contained in the thickening of the threads play a role.

The very yolk-rich eggs, which are laid in hollows of rotting, damp wood (several 100 eggs per female), hatch after about 2 weeks, so-called pupoid stages. These are immobile and not yet able to eat. From these emerge the first free-moving larval stage, which already has three tergites and three pairs of striding legs. This is followed by three further larval stages (4 tergites and 5 pairs of legs, 5 tergites and 6 pairs of legs, 5 tergites and 8 pairs of legs). This is followed by the sexually mature animals with six tergites and nine pairs of striding legs.

The life expectancy of the Eurypauropodidae is currently unknown, but it should be two to three years.


The Eurypauropodidae family is currently divided into two subfamilies:

European genera and species

In Europe there are only two of the genera of the Eurypauropodidae family:

Individual evidence

  1. Hasenhütl: Little feet (Eurypauropodide) - dwarfs among the millipedes. 1987, pp. 9-10.
  2. R. Schuster, K. Hasenhütl: The spermatophore of the Eurypauropodiden (Myriapoda, Pauropoda). Zoologischer Anzeiger, 211, 3/4, Jena 1983, pp. 187-196.


  • Klaus Hasenhütl: Little feet (Eurypauropodidae) - dwarfs among the millipedes. In: Carinthia II. Sonderheft 45, Verlag des Naturwissenschaftlichen Verein für Kärnten, Klagenfurt 1987, pp. 7–16 ( PDF on ZOBODAT ).
  • Klaus Hasenhütl: New dwarf millipedes from Carinthia (Myriapoda, Pauropoda). In: Carinthia II. Sonderheft 45, Verlag des Naturwissenschaftlichen Verein für Kärnten, Klagenfurt 1987, pp. 17–75 ( PDF on ZOBODAT ).

further reading

  • Carl August Attems: Pauropoda. In: W. Kükenthal, T. Krumbach (Hrsg.): Handbuch der Zoologie. 1st half, No. 1, 4, 1926, pp. 20-28
  • Alfred Kaestner: Textbook of special zoology. Part 1: invertebrates. 5. Delivery, 1963, pp. 1045-1047.
  • Karl Wilhelm Verhoeff : Pauropoda. In: Dr. HG Bronn's Classes and Orders of the Animal Kingdom. Volume 5: Symphyla and Pauropoda. Section 2: KW Verhoeff (arrangement): Myriapoda. Akad. Verl. Society, Leipzig 1934, pp. 121-200.
  • John A. Ryder: An account of a new genus of minute Pauropod Myriapods. Amer. Nat., XIII, 1879, pp. 603-612 (first description of the type species).
  • John A. Ryder: The larva of Eurypauropus spinosus . Proc. Acad. nat. Sc. Philadelphia, 1879, p. 164 (first description of the larvae).

Web links

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