Friday, 12 January 2007

Terrorists strike the worm bin?

Well i'm still not sure whether I have centipedes or millipedes in my worm bin. In my experience centipedes are an orange/brown colour, these are white but this could just be down to their age. I know the difference between the two (millipedes have 2 pairs of legs to each body segment whereas centipedes have just one) but i'm not convinced yet. It appears that millipedes are actually very conducive to the worm bin environment as a quote from this website shows:

'Millipedes are detritivores, earth's natural recyclers. They feed on plants and animals that have died, which recycles nutrients back into the soil much faster than waiting for the plant or animal to decompose naturally.'

However whilst millipedes appear to be a good thing centipedes are not; they like eating worms and it appears that they don't take to kindly to human contact either:

'Centipedes bite. They have strong jaws that inject venom into their victims. A centipede bite is a very painful and unforgettable experience. The affected area will become increasingly painful, inflamed, and will secrete pus. You'll be sorry if you attempt to touch or handle this creature.'

If I do have centipedes then should I risk my precious hands or let nature take it's cause?!

Worryingly as the image shows below it looks like part of a worm has had an unfortunate incident resulting in loss of (part of) body. Initial investigations by the Worm Police Department (WPD) suggest that there are two possible suspects; firstly a gang of (potentially) centipedes roaming the worm bin set upon the poor worm while he/she wasn't looking, or secondly human intervention at feeding time could have resulted in 'accidental limb severing'. The investigation continues.

Waste added today: it was all a bit mushy and smelly but i think there were probably potato peelings, onion skins, apple cores, teabags and lettuce leaves in there.

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