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Other Invertebrates

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Cylindroiulus burzenlandicus

Cylindroiulus burzenlandicus

The cylindrical body of this millipede grows up to 50 millimetres long and is whitish grey or cream coloured, with dark spots formed by the defensive glands on each segment. These glands secrete a strong acid, which colours human skin yellow and cannot be washed away for a long time.

In Ukraine, this species is common in the deciduous forests of the Carpathians and the forest-steppe belt up to the Dnipro. Outside Ukraine, it is known to exist in Romania, Slovakia and Poland.

The cylindroiulus burzenlandicus lives in the soil on the floor of beech and hornbeam forests, but is also typically found living densely in the trunks of felled trees. It is a typical xylophage, feeding on solid dead wood in which it creates numerous passages, thus contributing to the humification of organic waste in the forest. Like many other species of kessleri, when adult it is capable of tolerating high levels of radiation (up to 100,000 roentgen). It breeds in the summer. The female lays eggs at a depth of 3 to 5 centimetres in the soil, in a specially prepared chamber. It mostly winters in rotten stumps and under piles of brushwood. It can live for up to three and a half years.

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