A Millipede new to Gloucestershire – David Scott-Langley

On Friday 7th April I was working in a long-established garden in Lower Oddington (SP22). One of the tasks was to remove some ancient stumps of Cytisus battandieri from a border. One of them had been dead for so long it just pulled out of the ground. While carting it over to the bonfire I noticed a “wireworm” on the root and almost passed it over as just that. However, something was not quite right and a closer look showed it to be a pale yellowish millipede about 12mm long. Being pale it was possible to see that it had no eyespots and as most of the cylindrical millipedes have eyes this narrowed the range of species considerably. Checking the key later at home the species was confirmed as Cylindroiulus vulnerarius, the first time it has been recorded in the county. C. vulnerarius has only been recorded from about 25 sites across England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland and so has the status of Nationally Notable A. This species could turn up anywhere and some think that it may be found over the whole country but it certainly seems to be avoiding recorders nationally, unlike some other formerly rare ones that are now widely found.

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