Advertisement

Proceedings of the Zoological Society

, Volume 71, Issue 1, pp 1–8 | Cite as

Occurrence, Distribution and Morphological Description of 11 Species of Endemic Giant Pill-Millipedes of the Genus Arthrosphaera (Diplopoda: Sphaerotheriida: Arthrosphaeridae) in Southern India

  • Cheviri N. Ambarish
  • Kandikere R. Sridhar
Research Article
  • 108 Downloads

Abstract

The endemic giant pill-millipedes belonging to the genus Arthrosphaera has a long history of occurrence and distribution in the Indian Subcontinent. According to the earlier and recent records, up to 40 species of Arthrosphaera are confined to southern India and Sri Lanka. Being detritus feeders, they are sensitive to narrow range of abiotic factors and their population is dwindling due to severe human interference especially landscape modification or modern forestry/agricultural practices. There is an urgent need to update the status, occurrence and distribution in distinct ecological conditions of pill-millipedes in southern India as they are important component in organic matter decomposition as well as nutrient turn over in the forests or plantations. Based on recent surveys, the present study attempts to update occurrence, distribution and morphological description (light and scanning electron microscopy) with a diagnostic key for identification of 11 species of pill-millipedes occurring in the Western Ghats of India with commentary on their distribution pattern in different ecological conditions and impact of edaphic factors.

Keywords

Pill-millipedes Arthrosphaera Distribution Morphology Diagnostic key Western Ghats 

Notes

Acknowledgments

The authors are grateful to Mangalore University for permission to carryout studies on pill-millipedes in the Department of Biosciences. CNA acknowledges the award of INSPIRE Fellowship, Department of Science and Technology, New Delhi [DST/INSPIRE Fellowship/2011/(294): Award # IF110540]. KRS acknowledges the award of UGC-BSR Faculty Fellowship by the University Grants Commission, New Delhi. We appreciate statistical analysis by Sudeep D. Ghate, Department of Biosciences, Mangalore University. The authors are thankful to the editor and reviewers for valuable comments to improve the presentation of this manuscript.

References

  1. Achar, K.P. 1980. The use of air-drying and Giemsa differential banding techniques in the cytological studies of some Indian Diplopoda (Myriapoda). Ph.D. Thesis, Bangalore, India: Bangalore University.Google Scholar
  2. Achar, K.P. 1986. Analysis of male meiosis in seven species of Indian pill–millipede (Diplopoda: Myriapoda). Caryologia 39: 89–101.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Achar, K.P. 1987. Chromosomal evolution in Diplopoda (Myriapoda: Arthropoda). Caryologia 40: 145–155.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Ambarish, C.N. 2014. Studies on pill-millipedes of the Western Ghats: basic and applied approaches. Ph.D. Thesis, Mangalore, India: Mangalore University.Google Scholar
  5. Ambarish, C.N., and K.R. Sridhar. 2013. Observation on pill-millipedes of the Western Ghats (India). Journal of Agricultural Technology 9: 61–79.Google Scholar
  6. Ambarish, C.N., and K.R. Sridhar. 2014. Moulting behaviour of the giant pill-millipedes (Sphaerotheriida: Arthrosphaera) of the Western Ghats of India: an ex situ study. Lepcey—The Journal of Tropical Asian Entomology 3: 12–22.Google Scholar
  7. Ambarish, C.N., and K.R. Sridhar. 2016. Pattern of distribution of endemic pill-millipedes in the southwestern India. Proceedings of the Zoological Society. doi: 10.1007/s12595-015-0153-8.Google Scholar
  8. Ashwini, K.M. 2003. Ecological studies on Indian pill millipede, Arthrosphaera magna. Ph.D. Thesis, Mangalore, India: Mangalore University.Google Scholar
  9. Attems, C. 1936. Diplopods of India. Memoirs of Indian Museum 11: 133–167.Google Scholar
  10. Chowdaiah, B.N. 1962. Cytological studies of some Indian Diplopoda (Myriapoda). Ph.D. thesis, Mysore, India: University of Mysore.Google Scholar
  11. Chowdaiah, B.N. 1966a. Chromosome studies in two species of pill–millipedes (Diplopoda–Myriapoda). Caryologia 19: 135–141.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Chowdaiah, B.N. 1966b. Cytological investigations on some Indian Diplopoda (Myriapoda). Nature 210: 847.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Chowdaiah, B.N. 1966c. Cytological studies of some Indian Diplopoda—I (Myriapoda). Cytologia 31: 294–301.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Chowdaiah, B.N., and R. Kanaka. 1974. Cytological studies in six species of pill-millipedes (Diplopoda-Myriapoda). Caryologia 27: 55–64.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Golovatch, S.I., J.P. Mauriès, N. Akkari, P. Stoev, and J.J. Geoffroy. 2009. The millipede genus Glomeris Latreille, 1802 (Diplopoda, Glomerida, Glomeridae) in North Africa. Zoo Keys 12: 47–86.Google Scholar
  16. Janardanan, K.P., and P. Ramachandran. 1983. Observations on two new species of cephaline gregarines (protozoa: Sporozoa) of the genus Stenoductus Ramachandran 1976 from sphaerotherid millipedes in Kerala, India. Archiv für Protistenkunde 127: 405–412.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Kadamannaya, B.S. 2008. Studies on pill millipedes of Western Ghats and west coast of India. Ph.D. Thesis, Mangalore, India: Mangalore University.Google Scholar
  18. Kadamannaya, B.S., and K.R. Sridhar. 2009. Morphology and distribution of four pill millipedes (Arthrosphaera) of the Western Ghats. Animal Biology Journal 1: 81–98.Google Scholar
  19. Kadamannaya, B.S., C.N. Ambarish, and K.R. Sridhar. 2012. Morphological features of three endemic pill-millipedes of the genus Arthrosphaera in Western Ghats of India. Animal Biology Journal 3: 181–193.Google Scholar
  20. Paulpandian, A.L. 1966. A note on the respiration of the pill-millipede Arthrosphaera dalyi (Pocock). Current Science 35: 178–179.Google Scholar
  21. Pocock, R.I. 1895. Description of new genus of Zephronidae, with brief preliminary diagnoses of some new species. Annals and Magazine of Natural History (Zoology, Botany and Geology) 6(16): 409–415.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Pocock, R.I. 1899. A monograph of the pill-millipedes (Zephroniidae) inhabiting India, Ceylon and Burma. Journal of Bombay Natural History Society 12: 269–285.Google Scholar
  23. Wesener, T. 2014. A new phylogenetic analysis of the Sphaerotheriida (Diplopoda) with a revision of the Australian giant pill-millipedes. Invertebrate Systematics 28: 196–213.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Wesener, T., and D. van den Spiegel. 2009. A first phylogenetic analysis of giant pill-millipedes (Diplopoda, Sphaerotheriida), a new model Gondwanan taxon, with special emphasis on island gigantism. Cladistics 25: 545–573.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Wesener, T., M.J. Raupach, and P. Sierwald. 2010. The origins of the giant pill-millipedes from Madagascar (Diplopoda: Shpaerotheriida: Arthrosphaeridae). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 57: 1184–1193.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Zoological Society, Kolkata, India 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of BiochemistrySt. Aloysius CollegeMangaloreIndia
  2. 2.Department of BiosciencesMangalore UniversityMangaloreIndia

Personalised recommendations