December 16, 2021
With 1,306 legs of awesomeness, the first "true" millipede has finally been discovered!
Although the name "millipede" translates to "a thousand feet", until now, no millipede had ever been described with more than 750 legs.
The news broke after a team of scientists - including VMNH Research Associate Dr. Paul Marek and VMNH Myriapodologist Dr. Jackson Means - described the discovery in the scientific paper titled "The first true millipede—1306 legs long" published today in "Nature Scientific Reports", an open access journal that publishes original research from across all areas of the natural sciences, psychology, medicine and engineering.
"We always hypothesized that there would be a 'true' millipede discovered some day," said Jackson Means, a myriapodologist at the Virginia Museum of Natural History. But the discovery of one with over 1,300 legs, almost double the previous leg count? "That was pretty astonishing."