Trichorhina tomentosa (Budde-Lund, 1893)


GB IUCN status: Not applicable (non-native)

ID Difficulty


Trichorhina tomentosa is a small off-white species, reaching 5 mm in length, with eyes composed of a single black, sometime indistinct, ommatidium.  It has a distinctive oval body outline and the entire body is clothed in short club-shaped spines.  Only females are known (it is believed to be parthenogentic).

A brief description of this species, with figures, is given in Gregory (2014).

Keith Lugg
Keith Lugg
Keith Lugg


Trichorhina tomentosa has been widely recorded inside 'heated glasshouses'. This includes those at Glasgow and Belfast Botanic Gardens, Eden Project, Cornwall, but also inside small enclosures, such as a heated Cockroach cage in Oxford and a heated reptile house in Somerset. Additional sites are reported by Gregory & Lugg (2020).


It is readily collected from among damp litter, beneath dead wood, within rotting stumps, beneath low growing sprawling vegetation, etc. 

This species originates from tropical Central and South America, but has been introduced to glasshouses worldwide and is widely available as food for exotic pets.


Gregory, S. (2014) Woodlice (Isopoda: Oniscidea) from Eden Project, Cornwall, with descriptions of species new to Britain, and poorly known British species. Bulletin of the British Myriapod & Isopod Group 27: 3-26. 

BRC code