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Video: Kivsaki Are Amazing Centipedes. Benefits And Harm, Types, Maintenance Of The House. Photo
The world around us is amazing. And one of the strangest creatures in it is the centipede. What do we know about them? Very few. And often we are simply afraid of these peculiar creatures, bypassing them or trying to crush them. But not all of them are dangerous. If you take a closer look at these invertebrates, it turns out that some are so harmless that they even pretend to be pets. But others are the pests of our gardens and vegetable gardens. In this article, we will focus on kivsaki - creatures with a not very euphonious name, not very attractive appearance, but living next to us so close that it is simply unforgivable not to seek to learn about them!
- Who are the kivsaki?
- Kivsyaki next to us
- Kivsiak is a pet
Who are the kivsaki?
Most often, acquaintance with kivsyak occurs with us when harvesting strawberries. Small thin light worms with many legs gnaw holes in the berries and spoil their appearance. At the same time, they are found only in cloudy weather, since they are very sensitive to the sun and therefore lead a nocturnal lifestyle. In some years there are so many of them that you have to fight with them.
But in fact, kivsyak is not just a pest on berry plantations. He lives in the surface layer of the soil, in leaf litter, feeds on decaying organic matter, involving the remains of plants and fallen leaves in the ground, which contributes to its enrichment with nutrients. Only under certain conditions does kivsiak damage live roots, root crops and berries that touch the ground.
Family Real kivsaki includes over 600 species and about 20 genera. Distributed almost everywhere. It is represented as very small specimens, with a body length of only a few millimeters, and rather large ones - 10–20 cm.
The body of the kivsyakov consists of segments covered with a hard chitinous cover, each carrying two pairs of legs, which move in waves, starting from the front. A pair of antennae on the head is responsible for the sense of smell. Vision is either very weak or absent, depending on the species. Despite the large number of legs, these peculiar creatures move rather slowly.
Kivsaki live for a long time - from 5 to 10 years. Their sexual maturity occurs at the age of three. To lay an egg, the female buries herself in the ground. Molts also pass in the ground, after each of which the larva becomes one segment longer. In males, the seventh segment contains only one pair of legs, since the gonopodia is located instead of the second.
Despite their scary look, the kivsaki are rather shy. In case of danger, they curl up either in a spiral or in a ring to protect the lower part of the body and emit an unpleasant odor that frightens off the enemy. In some species, these secretions are poisonous. Other species have aggressive colors - bright stripes. Thanks to this, these invertebrates are not interesting for many predators as food, since they irritate the mucous membrane, but still birds and reptiles eat them.
Kivsyaki next to us
In our country, 150 types of kivsyak are common. The largest of them rarely reaches more than 6 cm in length. All of them actively participate in soil-forming processes, feeding on organic residues, and only when there is a lack of moisture they gnaw healthy plant tissues.
The most common in our country is the sandy kivsyak (Schizophyllum sabulosum), which lives in the wild in forests, meadows and fields. Its body length is 2.5–4 cm, its color is brown or black. A characteristic feature is the two red or yellow stripes along the back.
At the dacha, kivsyaks can be seen in a greenhouse, under boards, stones, in a heap of leaves. With a large distribution, they often gnaw fruits that touch the ground - melons, strawberries, tomatoes. However, they usually do not do much harm. Kivsaki begins to actively harm only in the heat, with a lack of moisture, feeding on juicy parts of plants. Or during mass breeding when they lack food.
To exclude harm from kivsyaks, it is necessary to loosen the top layer of the soil, make sure that the juicy fruits of vegetable and berry crops do not touch the ground, do not lie on plant residues. Saturate the beds with organic matter. With a large number of pests, after the onset of frost, carry out a deep digging of the soil with a turnover of the layer.
Chemical means of struggle do not give 100% of the result, however, such drugs as "Zemlin", "Karate", "Fury", "Aktofit", etc. are considered the most effective. They must be introduced into the soil in the evening, when the active period of the day begins for kivsyaks …
Kivsiak is a pet
Now that we have got acquainted with the kivsaki as such, we can also talk about the fact that there are species of much more impressive sizes than those found in our fauna - huge, reaching a length of 30 centimeters or more. They live mainly in Africa, but are very popular pets throughout the world.
The most common of them is the giant kivsyak, or African (Archispirostreptus gigas). In length, the animal reaches 27-30 cm, in diameter - 3-3.5 cm. The body has a black color, the limbs are red or red. An orange or brick stripe is visible between the segments. The life span of such a pet is about 7, and with good care, up to 10 years. It is found naturally in East Africa.
One of the most beautiful is considered to be rainbow kivsak (Aulacobolus rubropunctatus), an inhabitant of Southeast Asia. The peculiarity of this species lies in the fact that its covers, falling into the sun, shimmer in different colors. However, even in the shade, the animal is quite attractive - its bluish-gray body is lined with dark brown stripes into segments, the back is highlighted by a bright red line. At the same time, the rainbow kivsyak does not differ in large sizes, reaching a length of only 9-13 cm.
The most striking of those kept at home is Madagascar kivsiak (Aphistogoniulus corallipes). Its body length reaches 10–12 cm. The color varies in different shades of red. The black rings on the segments make it strikingly striped. But he lives only 5 years.
An interesting color, although not so catchy, has an olive kivsyak (Telodeinopus aoutii). The name itself speaks of the color of its covers. However, the shades of this animal can vary, deviating in both yellowish and brownish. The body length of the olive kivsaka reaches 24 cm. The segments have brown rings, which makes it striped. It originates from South Africa.
Features of keeping kivsyaks as pets
Keeping such a pet is not difficult. He needs a terrarium, not necessarily an impressive size, twice the length of the animal is enough. For a pair of kivsyaks, it is better to take a container of 30x30x20 cm. You also need a moist soil, 10-15 cm thick - it can be a mixture of earth, coconut substrate and sand mixed with lime. A layer of chalk or eggshells can be placed under the soil to replenish the animal's calcium reserves. It is advisable to plant moss on top and put pieces of rotten bark so that it can hide.
Kivsyak is unpretentious to food - he eats everything that is given, even pieces of cottage cheese and meat. But rotten wood, fallen leaves, slices of vegetables and fruits are still natural food for him. Optimal conditions for keeping are temperatures in the range of + 20 … 22 ° С and high air humidity - 70–90%.