Location:Hyderabad,South India. These worms usually come out when it rains,these worms are the most common ones any help in figuring out them,they come in groups too. Top view

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    $\begingroup$ Certainly a swarm of some Diplopoda species. Couldn't identify them any better, though. Video, other photos, news report. $\endgroup$
    – Rodrigo
    Aug 13, 2017 at 14:57

2 Answers 2


Based on the body structure and double pair of legs per body segment, this is a millipede.

Based on the small size and spacing between body segments, it could possibly be in the Paradoxosomatidae family. You could check by examining the specimen more closely:

Most species possess a groove or furrow ("sulcus") on the dorsal surface between the keels (paranota) on each segment.

National Geographic ran a story/video on swarming Paradoxosomatidae in Senegal in 2017:

enter image description here

Some species swarm together during mating season or to hunt for food, and some studies have theorized juveniles swarm together for protection from predators.

Bellairs et al. (1983)1 studied a similar swarming species of millipede in India:

The adults of Streptogonopus phipsoni (Pocock), an Indian polydesmoid millipede, emerge from the soil at the onset of the monsoon and mate. Eggs are laid in the soil and the adults die. The larvae leave the soil at stadium III and, apart from moulting periods, remain on the surface until the end of the monsoon. The larvae are aggregated in swarms, usually consisting of several hundred individuals. They are active on open ground, including metalled roads, during daylight, but usually spend the night in an inactive state under cover of stones or vegetation. If a swarm is disturbed, the individuals scatter but later reaggregate.

enter image description here

Source: Bellairs et al. (1983)

I couldn't find any additional reputable (or really much of any) detail about S. phipsoni in English sources online. So I think I'll leave you with this information for you to explore in your native language more closely.

  • Though, Bellairs et al. cite Hoffman (1980) 2 and Attens (1937) 3 as their identification sources.

  • Also, Golovatch & Wesener (2016)4 provide a relatively up-to-date species checklist of the millipedes of India, so I'm certain that reference would be a good place to continue learning more.


1 Bellairs, V., Bellairs, R. and Goel, S., 1983. Studies on an Indian polydesmoid millipede Streptogonopus phipsoni Life cycle and swarming behaviour of the larvae. Journal of Zoology, 199(1):31-50.

2 Hoffman, R. L. (1980). Classification of the Diplopoda. Geneve: Musee d’Histoire Naturelle

3 Attems, C. (1937). Myriapoda 3. Polydesmoidea 1 Fam. Strongylosomidae. Tierreich 12:1-300.

4 Golovatch, S.I. and Wesener, T., 2016. A species checklist of the millipedes (Myriapoda, Diplopoda) of India. Zootaxa, 4129(1):1-75.

  • $\begingroup$ @SonicSplasher please consider accepting ("checking") my answer if it adequately answers your question. If it does not, please let me know what lingering question/doubt you have and I'll try to address it if appropriate or possible. $\endgroup$ Aug 20, 2019 at 22:25
  • $\begingroup$ I am really sorry for responding this late, I had life stuff to do and totally forgot about stack.exchange. I'll review this and let you know fast $\endgroup$ Feb 8, 2020 at 18:31
  • $\begingroup$ As soon as I spot these badboys, I'll take a few and probably try to identify them from a checklist of characters. $\endgroup$ Feb 8, 2020 at 18:48

Streptogonopus phipsoni, probably IV or V stadium.

For reference, see: Bhakat, S. (1987) and other

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    $\begingroup$ for a reference, it is very helpful to include a web link. Lacking a web link, a full reference (e.g. journal, publisher, title) would help the asker to evaluate this answer. $\endgroup$ Apr 29, 2020 at 17:29
  • $\begingroup$ you are bhakat.s $\endgroup$ Jul 13, 2020 at 15:30

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