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Armadillidiidae

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Definition

noun

A taxonomic family comprised of terrestrial woodlouse species that are identifiable chiefly by their ability to roll into a ball as a defense mechanism


Supplement

Armadillidiidae is a taxonomic family belonging to the suborder Oniscidea. Members of this family are known for their ability to roll into a sphere as a defensive mode, which is akin to the armadillos. Thus, they are commonly referred to as pill woodlice, roly-polies, leg pebbles, or potato bugs.

Armadillidium vulgare is one of the woodlouse species belonging to the family Armadillidiidae. This species is sometimes confused with a pill millipede since they seem to be morphologically similar (being segmented and are of the same size). They also share similar habitat and both can roll into a ball. However, the pill millipede (e.g. Glomeris marginata) has two pairs of legs in each of the body segment. The pillbug (similar to all isopods) has only a single pair of legs in a body segment.

Apart from Armadillidiidae, other genera of this family are Eleoniscus, Ballodillium, Trichodillidium, etc.


Scientific classification:

  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Subphylum: Crustacea
  • Class: Malacostraca
  • Order: Isopoda
  • Suborder: Oniscidea [Latreille, 1802]
  • Family: Armadillidiidae

Common name(s):

  • pill-bug
  • potato bug
  • pill woodlouse
  • roly-poly
  • doodle bug
  • carpenter

See also: