Info

sci JTKJERELLIDS

1 hese arc short and stout symphylans with tough tergites. They arc typically pale gray, straw-colored, or white. Scutigerellids are highly flexible and are also able to run very rapidly, twisting and turning their way t tiny crevices to escape predators.

• llee Cycle: The females use their mouths to pick up the stalked spermatophore deposited on the ground by the males, keeping the sperm in special pouches in their mouth. The females also use their mouthparts to remove eggs from their genital opening and then smear the eggs with sperm and stick them to a plant or position them in a crevice in the soil. A cluster of about 30 eggs may be laid at one time. When they hatch out, the first-stage young have six pairs of legs. They gain additional body segments and legs with each successive molt. Some species of symphylan can live for three or four years.

• Occurrence Worldwide, in varied habitats, in soil and leaf litter.

• remark Many species arc root-feeders and can cause losses in seedling and tuber crops.

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