Cylindrodesmus hirsutus Pocock, 1889
GB IUCN status: Not applicable (non-native)
A small white or pale brown millipede (to 5mm in length), with feebly developed paranota (side bumps) and with a distinctly hairy body. It has been recorded from inside heated glasshouses.
A description of this species, with figures, is given by Read (2008).
Distribution and Habitat
Henrik Enghoff recalls seeing specimens of this parthenogenetic species from Britain around 1985 but the record was never published (Golovatch et al., 2000). The first confirmed record is of individuals found in the Palm House at Kew in 2002. However, the identity of these animals was not recognised until further specimens were collected from the same location two years later. Further specimens were found at Kew in 2005 and a population was discovered in a tropical butterfly house in South Yorkshire later the same year (Lee, 2005, pg.2). Subsequently it has been recorded from a few additional tropical glasshouses, including Wisley Gardens and Eden Project.
It is a pantropical animal and introduced populations have been found in hothouses in Berlin, Paris and Vienna (Golovatch et al., 2000).
This species account is based on Lee (2006).