Feb 23, 2007


You're looking at a giant carnivorous centipede, possibly a member of scolopendra gigantea. The guy holding this is defying the MSDS sheet that came along with this arthropod. Their poison is very toxic. In fact, should you be envenomated (great word!) by one of the members of scolopendra, you would suffer from scolopendrism, which consists of local sharp pain (think hornet sting), severe swelling, chills, fever, and weakness.

The next time you travel to South America or the Caribbean, say, to Jamaica, keep your eye out for these. Paradise can be a painful place.

Thanks for the photo, Phlimm.

Photo courtesy: Mark M. Lucas


Rasmus said...

Y'know, I like ugly animals as much as the next guy in here... but you're not supposed to touch them!

k said...


I have a Scolopendra subspinipes, the slightly smaller, brighter version, and I think these things are freakin' cool, but you don't see me touchin' em.

I love the phrase "defying the MSDS sheet..."

Chrissie said...

Ack! Horror! That makes my skin crawl...yick.

Jade said...

It bears repeating: NEVER HANDLE A CENTIPEDE! There are reported deaths from some Scolopendra sp. Even if it doesn't kill you, you may wish you were dead!

Amazing photo. I saw that many years back. The guy overfed that poor centipede so much that it stopped hunting, which is why he was able to handle it like that. I still think that handling it was more stupidity than bravery, though.

(these opinions are coming from someone who's owned hundreds of centipedes)

Callandrea said...

You're trying to scare the crap out me right?

kf said...

this makes me want to stay in a white room, locked in, for the rest of my life.

thanks for the nightmare

kf said...

this makes me want to stay in a white room, locked in, for the rest of my life.

thanks for the nightmare

Denita TwoDragons said...

Oh yeah!~ I remember seeing a YouTube clip about these big'uns in the wild. The clip showed one catching a bat--in MIDAIR!

I rummaged around and found the link for y'all: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PgLmUb5P_Ws

You thought you were creeped out before, click that link and prepare to forget about sleep...*grin*


Swintah said...

That looks like something that would burst out of someone's chest cavity if given half a chance.

Jack Ruttan said...

David Cronenberg would make it a hero in his movie.

Raging Wombat said...

Sorry, Callandrea. I'm mean.

b. lynch black said...

okay... now, in general, i likes the insects of all kinds... and find them fascinating. but between the size, the poison and the fact that it EATS BATS i am officially grossed out. i *love* bats.