American Isopod and Myriapod Group Website

Hello everyone! I wanted to share the release of the American Isopod and Myriapod Group (AIMG) website with you all, any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. We hope that this website will aid in the identification of both Isopods and Myriapods of North and Central America.

Our mission:
The American Isopod and Myriapod Group (AIMG) aims to improve awareness and knowledge of Isopoda and Myriapoda in Central and North America. AIMG works with amateurs and professionals to ensure that reliable information about the species, their biology, habitats, ecology, and distribution, is collected and made available. We aim to enable accurate identifications, publish distribution information, and conduct research. This is promoted through social media and its website, the online newsletter, journal, and field meetings, which are open to anyone and everyone.

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The page answered the question I was going to ask you:

Most native Nearctic terrestrial isopods are coastal, with representatives being from both cosmopolitan and subcosmopolitan clades (Littorophiloscia , Armadilloniscus and Alloniscus ) with a few regional endemics (Scyphacella and Detonella ). A vast majority of the terrestrial isopods present north of Mexico, however, are more recent introductions from Europe (rarely other regions) that occured in the past 400 years, with the oldest records of land isopods being the original description of Porcellio spinicornis (Brickwork Woodlouse) in Philadelphia in the late 18th century.

So our pillbug fauna isn’t all exotic, but away from the coasts, it might as well be. That is mind-boggling.

It brings up a question: did these exotic pillbugs completely replace a native pillbug fauna before it could be documented? Or were there just no pillbugs at all in interior North America prior to 400 years ago?

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The current theory is that most of the Isopoda diversity we have in North America radiated from Central and South America it is also believed that the species could not expand much until the glacial period traped them; therefore, we have a lack of biodiversity. However, there may be many cryptic Ligidium species currently thought to be Ligidium elrodii. Exotic species are outcompeting native fauna possibly leading to the extinction of a few species that have not been recorded for 80+ years. A population of Venezillo arizonicus (that is most probably a different species) may be endangered. Venezillo arizonicus most probably is comprised of two distinct populations which need to be revised as separate species the California population (White Venezillo arizonicus) and the Arizona population (Gray Venezillo arizonicus) both restricted to around 1,500km which consists of a fragmented population (due to them being mainly restricted to burrows in the desert) and has been further fragmented by human developments. Venezillo arizonicus has a low reproductive rate of 3-10 mancae per year. The “California” ones can be found in AZ too, just extreme southwestern. The White Venezillo arizonicus may be subterranean or semi-subterranean.

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