The woodlouse is a crab with 14 sections to its body, which allows it to roll up into a ball to protect itself from predators. This implies that just the woodlouse’s hard exterior shell is visible.
They may be found in woods and jungles all around the world, in dark, damp locations. Because the woodlouse feeds on decaying leaf and plant detritus on the forest floor, it serves an important part in the natural carbon cycle.
They are typically 1 cm long, although many tropical species are thrice that size, and some are much larger. The usual lifespan is roughly two years, though some have been known to live up to four years.
The woodlouse is the only crustacean that lives on land rather than in water. There are around 3,000 distinct species of woodlouse known to exist on the globe.
They usually grey or brown in color, although the actual color and size depend on the type of them and the location where it lives. Aside from the polar regions and dry deserts, the woodlouse can be found in practically every ecosystem on the planet.
Because they are herbivore, They exclusively consumes organic plant stuff. The woodlouse consumes decaying leaf and plant materials found on the forest floor, including leaves, rotting wood, and fruits that fall from the trees above, rather than live plants.
They are preyed upon by a variety of animals across the world due to its small size and ability to defend itself by rolling up into a ball. The woodlouse’s main predators are toads, centipedes, spiders, millipedes, and the occasional wasp.
The female lays around 24 eggs, which she stores in a brood pouch. After only a few days of incubation, the woodlouse eggs hatch, exposing the woodlouse infants. Because baby woodlice take several months to properly grow, the mother woodlouse will typically stay with her young until they are fully developed adult woodlice.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Arthropoda
- Order: Isopoda
- Family: Oniscidea
- Scientific Name: Oniscidea
- Conservation Status: Least Concern