The giant centipede at Tuyen's house.
At 9am on October 23, Mr. Mai Van Tuyen’s family, in Yen Lam commune, Yen Dinh district, Thanh Hoa province, was scared when a giant centipede dropped from the roof onto a stone table in front of the door. They used a racket to catch the centipede.
The centipede is as big as a thumb of adults, and 24cm long. It is up to 27cm long if it is measured from the antennae on its head to the tail. The centipede is now locked in a bottle.
On February 3, Ms. Tran Thi Le Thu, 38, in Ha Lam townships, Thang Binh district, Quang Nam province, was also in panic when she saw a giant centipede under the television cabinet. This centipede is 23cm long.
The biggest centipede in the world was recognized last year in London, with a length of 27cm.
The centipede at Le's house.
Centipedes are elongated metameric animals with one pair of legs per body segment. Despite the name, centipedes can have a varying number of legs from under 20 to over 300. Centipedes have an odd number of pairs of legs, e.g. 15 or 17 pairs of legs (30 or 34 legs) but never 16 pairs (32 legs). A key trait uniting this group is a pair of venom claws or forcipes formed from a modified first appendage. Centipedes are a predominantly carnivorous taxon.
Size can range from a few millimeters in the smaller lithobiomorphs and geophilomorphs to about 30 cm (12 in) in the largest scolopendromorphs. Centipedes can be found in a wide variety of environments. Worldwide there are estimated to be 8,000 species of centipede, of which 3,000 have been described.