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A general methodology for collecting and preserving xystodesmid and other large millipedes for biodiversity research.

Means JC, Francis EA, Lane AA, Marek PE - Biodivers Data J (2015)

Bottom Line: With an estimated 80% of species remaining undescribed (but see Brewer et al. 2012), millipede taxonomy offers the opportunity to discover new species and explore biodiversity.The lack of basic alpha taxonomic information regarding millipedes belies their significant ecological role and potential as premier models in ecological and evolutionary studies.The group possesses many fascinating biological properties (e.g., bioluminescence, mimicry, and complex chemical secretions) that have been the focus of several recent studies and are emerging avenues of future investigation.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, United States of America.

ABSTRACT

Background: With an estimated 80% of species remaining undescribed (but see Brewer et al. 2012), millipede taxonomy offers the opportunity to discover new species and explore biodiversity. The lack of basic alpha taxonomic information regarding millipedes belies their significant ecological role and potential as premier models in ecological and evolutionary studies. The group possesses many fascinating biological properties (e.g., bioluminescence, mimicry, and complex chemical secretions) that have been the focus of several recent studies and are emerging avenues of future investigation.

New information: Here we summarize a methodology for large-bodied millipede collection, curation, and preservation for genetic analyses with the hope that sharing these techniques will stimulate interest in these charismatic detritivores.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Millipede rake, consisting of a broom handle attached by nuts, bolts, and washers to a corner brace. Inset shows the rake head in detail.
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Figure 1645582: Millipede rake, consisting of a broom handle attached by nuts, bolts, and washers to a corner brace. Inset shows the rake head in detail.

Mentions: Xystodesmid millipedes can often be found beneath leaf litter and as such a tool for the removal of litter is helpful in their collection. The millipede rake, originally adopted by Rowland Shelley (pers. comm.), consists of a wooden broom handle with a metal corner brace bolted to one end (Fig. 4). The flat metal end is used to scrape away leaves and debris and to lift small branches (Fig. 5). The rake should not be used to move heavy debris (> 3 kg), such as logs or rocks, as the tip can easily bend under high pressure. Debris should be returned to its original location to reduce desiccation and impact to habitat. Care must be taken to insure that the rake is scraped gently under debris as millipedes may be damaged when the rake is used with excessive force. Millipedes exposed by removal of leaf matter will typically curl into a tight ball for protection or attempt to flee. The relatively slow movement of millipedes (0.5 cm/s) makes their capture a simple procedure (Marek et al. 2011). The millipede rake may also be used to move snakes, clear a path through stinging nettle, or as a support when moving through difficult terrain.


A general methodology for collecting and preserving xystodesmid and other large millipedes for biodiversity research.

Means JC, Francis EA, Lane AA, Marek PE - Biodivers Data J (2015)

Millipede rake, consisting of a broom handle attached by nuts, bolts, and washers to a corner brace. Inset shows the rake head in detail.
© Copyright Policy - creative-commons-attribution
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4563156&req=5

Figure 1645582: Millipede rake, consisting of a broom handle attached by nuts, bolts, and washers to a corner brace. Inset shows the rake head in detail.
Mentions: Xystodesmid millipedes can often be found beneath leaf litter and as such a tool for the removal of litter is helpful in their collection. The millipede rake, originally adopted by Rowland Shelley (pers. comm.), consists of a wooden broom handle with a metal corner brace bolted to one end (Fig. 4). The flat metal end is used to scrape away leaves and debris and to lift small branches (Fig. 5). The rake should not be used to move heavy debris (> 3 kg), such as logs or rocks, as the tip can easily bend under high pressure. Debris should be returned to its original location to reduce desiccation and impact to habitat. Care must be taken to insure that the rake is scraped gently under debris as millipedes may be damaged when the rake is used with excessive force. Millipedes exposed by removal of leaf matter will typically curl into a tight ball for protection or attempt to flee. The relatively slow movement of millipedes (0.5 cm/s) makes their capture a simple procedure (Marek et al. 2011). The millipede rake may also be used to move snakes, clear a path through stinging nettle, or as a support when moving through difficult terrain.

Bottom Line: With an estimated 80% of species remaining undescribed (but see Brewer et al. 2012), millipede taxonomy offers the opportunity to discover new species and explore biodiversity.The lack of basic alpha taxonomic information regarding millipedes belies their significant ecological role and potential as premier models in ecological and evolutionary studies.The group possesses many fascinating biological properties (e.g., bioluminescence, mimicry, and complex chemical secretions) that have been the focus of several recent studies and are emerging avenues of future investigation.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, United States of America.

ABSTRACT

Background: With an estimated 80% of species remaining undescribed (but see Brewer et al. 2012), millipede taxonomy offers the opportunity to discover new species and explore biodiversity. The lack of basic alpha taxonomic information regarding millipedes belies their significant ecological role and potential as premier models in ecological and evolutionary studies. The group possesses many fascinating biological properties (e.g., bioluminescence, mimicry, and complex chemical secretions) that have been the focus of several recent studies and are emerging avenues of future investigation.

New information: Here we summarize a methodology for large-bodied millipede collection, curation, and preservation for genetic analyses with the hope that sharing these techniques will stimulate interest in these charismatic detritivores.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus