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Monstrous Big Millipede - Narceus americanus-annularis-complex

Monstrous Big Millipede - Narceus americanus-annularis-complex
Near Starved Rock State Park, La Salle, IL., Illinois, USA
April 25, 2010
Size: one foot, possibly 14 in.
Found this critter while morel hunting in north-central Illinois, not too far from the Vermillion River. It was half past noon, and I nearly grabbed the branch it was sunning itself on. Extremely hard exo-skeleton, very smooth, didn't run when I touched it, though it did "relieve" itself. I would love to know what sort of millipede grows to such a huge size in the region, as i have never seen an insect in the wild that was so large, nearly a third to half an inch in diameter. Thank you folks for your help! One more thing, the head is on the left end, the rear on the right.

Images of this individual: tag all
Monstrous Big Millipede - Narceus americanus-annularis-complex Monstrous Big Millipede - Narceus americanus-annularis-complex

Moved from Millipedes.

Even with the reduced estimat
Even with the reduced estimate, it is a real monster Narceus americanus, which usually gets to 4+" or so. Also, it is not an insect, it is a millipede. Rowland Shelley

The record length for a millipede in the world as of 2003 was a pet African giant millipede at around 15in. (Archispirostreptus gigas) although similar in coloration I don't think it has as distinctive red banding. To me this looks more like Narceus americanus but they are known to grow only to about 10cm about 4in (twice as big as other north american millipedes) according to Bugguide.

After consulting with my two witnesses, one says it was about 8 inches, the other about 10. All i can say is that it was as long as my forearm, which measures exactly 9 and 7 sixteenths of an inch, so it appears i made a mistake in the original estimation of its size by 3 to 5 inches. I haven't the knowledge to even call my self an ameteur ametuer entemologist, and this is my first attempt at insect photography. At any rate, if 4 inches is the normal size, I wish I'd have brought this one back home with me! Thanks for your feedback.

14 inches! You must be a fisherman :)
No wonder the ones that get away are always so big.

Monstrous big millipede
As a matter of fact i am a fisherman, though I try to keep the fish stories to a minimum. It was probably closer to a foot. Definitely the largest bug I've ever seen in the wild. Just happy I had my camera to document it.

Moved from ID Request.

Probably Narceus americanus, one of the largest American millipedes at up to 10 cm.

mostrous big millipede
thank you! are they very common? and is defecation a defense tactict, or was it just that time of day for it?

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