Pill Bugs Up Close by Greg PyersThis excellent informational piece on pill bugs, rolypolys, sowbugs, and other Armadillidiidae, that is, the mediumsize bugs that can roll up in a ball. As subjects for science investigation, pillbugs are great for kids, since they are not poisonous or venomous, dont bite humans, dont carry disease, and are disinclined to escape from captivity if captivity has some dirt and some old leaves to hide under. Also, in most environments they are scavengers and dont attack live plant material, but can easily be found under rocks and plant pots.
Anyway, this book talks about the parts of pillbugs, their life cycles (no mating pictures, so thats safe), the egg laying and the marsupium (the mother pill bug carries the babies in a pounch for a certain amount of time), and other fascinating facts, with lots of clear, up close pictures. An excellent book to find facts to back up with Rolypolyology and Im a Pill Bug.
Roly Poly facts: the arthropods that roll up into a ball - Animal Fact Files
Roly Poly Bug Facts
The pillbug, Armadillidium vulgare Latreille , is an isopod, a type of non-insect arthropod also known as a terrestrial crustacean. It is sometimes called a roly-poly due to its ability to roll into ball when threatened or bothered. This defense behavior makes it look round like a pill, which is why it is sometimes known as a pillbug. The common name woodlice is a term used for both pillbugs and sowbugs in Europe. The name woodlice gives reference to where they can be found, such as under logs.
Pill bugs roll into a ball for defense or to avoid drying out. With winter rains, Bay Area pill bugs are out in force. Doodle bugs. Potato bugs. Wood Shrimp. Pill bugs are more closely related to shrimp and lobsters than crickets or butterflies.
What are Pill Bugs?
When you turn over a rock, old board, mulch or leaf litter in your yard, you may see a bunch of small, slate-gray buglike creatures that resemble miniature armadillos. When you touch one, it rolls itself into a hard ball. - Plants Were Made for People. Hello Aloe!
They Might Be Both! Roly poly, doodle bugs, or pill bugs… whatever you call them, these are popular little garden dwellers. Children play with them, fascinated by their ability to roll up into a little ball. Frogs and lizards find them to be tasty treats. And we find them in every part of the United States as well as widespread abroad.