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Invasions of the Portuguese millipede, Ommatoiulus moreleti, in southern Australia

Baker, G.H., Grevinga, L. and Banks, N. (2013) Invasions of the Portuguese millipede, Ommatoiulus moreleti, in southern Australia. Pedobiologia, 56 (4-6). pp. 213-218.

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The Portuguese millipede, Ommatoiulus moreleti, was first recorded in Australia on Eyre Peninsula, South Australia in 1953. By the early 1980s, O. moreleti had spread to several sites across southern Australia where it had become a significant nuisance pest invading houses in large numbers in autumn and spring. At that time, it was predicted that O. moreleti would further expand its distribution to occupy most areas of southern Australia with mean annual rainfall of 300-2400. mm (excluding areas with summer rain maxima), mean daily minimum air temperatures in winter of 0-15. °C and mean daily maximum temperatures in summer of 18-33. °C, based on climatic matching of where it had already spread to. This paper reports the known distribution of O. moreleti in Australia in 2013 and confirms the earlier prediction. Whilst stadial age and body size (width) of O. moreleti now vary greatly between individual sites in Australia, geographic scale patterns in these traits are slight, with both age and size only weakly correlated with rainfall and temperature. Millipedes are smaller in Australia compared with Portugal. The importance of this size variation is discussed with reference to its likely influence on fecundity and the success of an introduced biological control agent ( Pelidnoptera nigripennis: Diptera, Sciomyzidae)

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): School of Veterinary and Life Sciences
Publisher: Urban und Fischer Verlag Jena
Copyright: © 2013 Elsevier GmbH All rights reserved.
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