Isopod

What do you call them?  Pill bug?  Sow bug?  Doodlebug?  Roly-poly?  Something else entirely?

No matter what name you use to describe them, they are nothing more extravagant than terrestrial crustaceans called woodlice (or a woodlouse in the singular).  Many consider them insects, yet they’re more closely related to shrimp and crab than to any true bug.

The most common isopod of this sort is the kind that rolls into a ball.  That is Armadillidium vulgare, or the common pill bug.  Depending on where you’re located, you undoubtedly have another name for them.

I see these little critters scurrying about all the time.  In fact, I watch every step carefully when I’m on the patio, for it’s not been entirely uncommon for me to accidentally crush one of them because I didn’t see it making its way across the concrete floor.  The worst case is when I’m not wearing shoes…

Anyway, here are a few photos of my neighborhood isopods during recent visits, and I’ve included a brief yet fun video at the end showing one scampering away as I chase it with the camera (not that it knew I was chasing it, but it seems that way).

And now the video…


One thought on “Isopod”

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