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euclid
05-12-2010, 03:32 PM
I'm looking for US words for insects, specifically insects that crawl.

Over here, kids talk about "creepy-crawlies"

I have an idea that Americans might say something like:

Creeper-crawlers or
Creeper-crawlies or maybe
Creepy-crawlers

Stanmiller
05-12-2010, 03:48 PM
Bugs.

dirtsider
05-12-2010, 04:13 PM
Ick.

PeterL
05-12-2010, 04:31 PM
If you want to call them creepy-crawlies, then do so. That isn't a common term, but it is used.

Maryn
05-12-2010, 04:32 PM
We don't seem to use any form of creepy-crawl to refer to our bugs, at least not where I've lived (southwest, northeast, upper midwest). We most just call them bugs, unless we name the type, like spider or beetle. Or the specific beetle, like a jimmy bug. (We don't kill jimmy bugs at our house.)

Maryn, not good with spiders

RJK
05-12-2010, 04:32 PM
I vote for bugs.

DeleyanLee
05-12-2010, 04:38 PM
I've heard "creepy-crawlies" in the Mid-west, but it's uncommon. "Bugs" is far more common.

And, FWIW, I've never heard of a "jimmy-bug".

Chris P
05-12-2010, 04:39 PM
Creepy crawlies isn't used much, but people will know what you mean. "Bugs" is probably the most common. There are a variety of names for specific insects, and they vary by region.

ether
05-12-2010, 05:10 PM
Seconding "bugs." Creepy-crawlies would get your point across, but it sounds a lot more like something a little kid would say. I'm not sure I've ever heard an adult say it in a serious manner.

FYI, Creepy-crawlers are actually an older (although I think they still sell them) 'bug oven' for kids where you put this goo into bug-shaped molds and bake them so you have little rubbery insects for play. http://www.amazon.com/Jakks-Pacific-55277-Crawlers-Bugmaker/dp/B000ETRF3W

Kathie Freeman
05-12-2010, 07:36 PM
I use creepy-crawlies. Bugs doesn't convey the disgust factor.

Wicked
05-12-2010, 08:30 PM
Bugs.
Creepy-crawlies works too, but isn't as commonly used.

The kids at school always ask me about my bugs. It's usually the adults who call them creepy-crawlies.
One of the teachers actually used that term in her class letter, thanking me for bringing in my "creepy-crawlies" for a presentation.

Linda Adams
05-12-2010, 08:44 PM
That could even be individual preferences. I don't think anyone in my family used the term "creepy crawly" when I was growing up. It was either bugs, or the bug name. Usually,the bug name. Moths, spiders, potato bugs, roaches (that we did abbreviate from the longer form), sow bugs, centipedes, butterflies, etc. If memory serves, the reason we were specific in what we called them was because my father identified them. He was a scientist (not in bugs or biology), so he was more specific. One time, when he was visiting Texas, he saw a roach there and had to ask, "Do you shoot it or spray it?"

As an adult, I did refer to a guy who gave me the creepy crawlies"--at the time, my best friend was jumping out of a relationship that was going nowhere and decided to get married to this guy a week later to get it over. Even the other men (we're talking soldiers) all described this guy in the same way I did. She divorced him two weeks later.

Jersey Chick
05-12-2010, 08:51 PM
I reserve creepy-crawly for silverfish because they give me the creeps. I can't stand them. Otherwise, it's either bugs or (if in the singular) the actual bug-name.

Puma
05-12-2010, 10:02 PM
We've used creepy crawlers (or crawlies) off and on for a number of years. It's descriptive. But we do also use the proper name for individual bugs. Creepy crawler is more of a generic term if you're not sure what you might encounter (or what might appear when you turn off the lights.) Puma

GeorgeK
05-12-2010, 10:37 PM
Bugs...of course the official definition of a bug is anything that crunches if you step on it...Ok, too little sleep for me and too much information for you...

Shadow_Ferret
05-12-2010, 10:50 PM
Bugs.

Creepy-Crawlers were those rubbery bugs you could make from a mold.

I never heard of "jimmy bug" either.

GeorgeK
05-12-2010, 10:52 PM
no, creepy crawlers are gummie worms. They're a confection.

euclid
05-12-2010, 11:10 PM
Clarification: I'm actually looking for a familiar word for a millipede. Bug seems too short, somehow.

Thanks, everyone.

Midnight Star
05-12-2010, 11:13 PM
Usually we just call them "bugs" or by their names (spider, millipede, etc.). A millipede would probably just be called a millipede. But if it's a little kid talking, they might say something like "Ew! It's a giant worm with legs!" :D

Puma
05-12-2010, 11:16 PM
I think most people call them millipedes (or centipedes). You could try "thousand leg bug". Then there are the disgusting house centipedes (which I'm sure some people have referred to as creepy crawlers). Puma

Wicked
05-13-2010, 12:06 AM
You're talking about this kind of millipede, right? And not the tiny little oval shaped isopods that scurry around the edges of wet sidewalks?

http://img5.imageshack.us/img5/6765/p1010055g.jpg

A millipede is usually just called a millipede by most people. My bug-keeping buddies sometimes shorten the name to 'millies', or 'pedes'.

I dislike them referred to as 'pedes' because it's the same nickname used for centipedes, which is an entirely different creature.

Now if you are talking about the little oval shaped ones that scurry around under woodpiles, and wet sidewalks, those have a lot of names. Wood louse, pill bug, sow bug, rolly-polly, etc.
They roll up into a ball when disturbed, but so do millipedes.

Puma
05-13-2010, 02:31 AM
Hey Wicked - I'm no bug expert, but what's in the hands in the picture are what we've called centipedes. And there's another multi-legged critter that isn't a sowbug or a roly-poly - it's usually sort of a golden brown, much smaller than what we call centipedes, long front feelers, legs on each side about as long as the body is wide - that's what we call millipedes. What are they? Puma

euclid
05-13-2010, 03:00 AM
I checked this out in Google. Centipedes move fast. They are carnivorous and can have as many as 300 legs. There are 8,000 different species of centipede. They come in all sorts of colours.

Millipedes can have up to 750 legs. They eat rotting leaves and move slowly. I think I read that there are 10,000 species of millipede. They tend to be darker in colour than the centipede.

Anyway, it's all there is Google. I think Wicked's holding a heap of millipedes.
Centipedes can bite, btw!

Jersey Chick
05-13-2010, 03:05 AM
EEEEK!!!

**jumps up on chair**

Wicked
05-13-2010, 04:04 AM
Hey Wicked - I'm no bug expert, but what's in the hands in the picture are what we've called centipedes. And there's another multi-legged critter that isn't a sowbug or a roly-poly - it's usually sort of a golden brown, much smaller than what we call centipedes, long front feelers, legs on each side about as long as the body is wide - that's what we call millipedes. What are they? Puma

Those are my hands. And they are Archispirostreptus gigas, giant millipedes. :) They are rather slow, and have two pair of legs per body segment.

Rolly-pollies are isopods. They're related to millipedes. Both eat decaying plant matter, and other organic matter.

Centipedes are carnivorous, venomous, and very fast. They have one pair of legs per body segment.

Millipedes can come in some unusual shapes, sizes and colors. I'll see if I can find some good links.

Puma
05-13-2010, 04:30 AM
Yep - I know Isopods (had a creek infested with them this spring - not good) - and I actually think pill bugs are sort of cute. But what I'm talking about aren't Isopods. And they aren't fat, round guys like the ones in your hands. Time to hit the books. Puma

Wicked
05-13-2010, 04:35 AM
I'm not fond of excruciating pain, so I would never hold a centipede. Not of any species.


Here are some pictures of a common hobby centipede.

http://atshq.org/forum/showthread.php?t=717

Here are some pictures of a few millipede species.
http://www.arachnoboards.com/ab/showthread.php?t=118547&highlight=millipede+pictures

Dragon millipede
http://insects.about.com/od/photography/ig/Discoveries-of-the-Mekong/dragon_millipede.htm



And there's another multi-legged critter that isn't a sowbug or a roly-poly - it's usually sort of a golden brown, much smaller than what we call centipedes, long front feelers, legs on each side about as long as the body is wide - that's what we call millipedes.I don't know where you live, but if I had to guess just from the description, I would say house centipede.
Did it look like this?
http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showpost.php?p=4073679&postcount=70

Smish
05-13-2010, 04:37 AM
I'm looking for US words for insects, specifically insects that crawl.

Over here, kids talk about "creepy-crawlies"

I have an idea that Americans might say something like:

Creeper-crawlers or
Creeper-crawlies or maybe
Creepy-crawlers

I grew up in the South, and we said creepy-crawlies (and I still do, sometimes). It may have just been something in my own family, though.

Even if it's not something widely used, if it's something your character would say, say it. It clearly conveys your point that it's a creepy freakin' bug. :rolleyes:

Silver King
05-13-2010, 04:43 AM
I reserve creepy-crawly for silver king because he gives me the creeps. I can't stand him...
:cry:

SWest
05-13-2010, 04:47 AM
:cry:

:Hug2: Bit harsh, even for a New Jersian... ;)

Jersey Chick
05-13-2010, 04:53 AM
Oh, that's just wrong, SK. You know I loves ya!

Who changed my post?!?!

SWest
05-13-2010, 04:56 AM
EEEEK!!!

**jumps up on chair**


Oh, that's just wrong, SK. You know I loves ya!

Who changed my post?!?!

Gal jumps onto a chair and someone takes all-advantage of her! :eek:

:popcorn:

Silver King
05-13-2010, 05:12 AM
...Who changed my post?!?!
I copied it the way my mind first read the post. :D

Puma
05-13-2010, 06:01 AM
Hi Wicked - What I'm talking about is a centipede (I obviously had the two reversed), but it isn't a house centipede - it's a woodland one and that's where I see them - outside around woodpiles and downed logs. They're pretty, maybe an inch long and sort of a red-golden brown. I'll have to do some more looking to give you a better name than that. I'm in Ohio, by the way. Puma

Libbie
05-13-2010, 06:20 AM
A zoo keeper weighs in! I've taken care of invertebrates before and talked to lots of kids about them, so I have some experience here. :D

The ones pictured were indeed millipedes, but we don't get that variety in the U.S. Ours are much smaller. The easiest way for a layperson to tell a centipede from a millipede at a glance is body shape: millis have round bodies like a hot dog, while centis have flat bodies like a piece of paper (not quite that flat, but this is how I describe the difference to kids.) If you can get close enough to really take a good look, you can tell that centipedes have one pair of legs per body segment, while millipedes have two pairs. [Edit: Oh, I didn't see Wicked's post that delineates the difference between the two until now. But I love your millis, Wicked! I think invertebrates are awesome. Some of the coolest animals I've ever worked with.]

As for what to call critters...the U.S. is a big place and dialect varies quite a lot between regions, of course. "Bug" is probably the most universal word for any little invertebrate critter. I think "creepy-crawlie" would get the idea across to any reader in the U.S., though, if you're going for a more sinister description. It's not a common term where I'm from (we'd just call them spiders or centipedes) but I'd think an American reader would quickly get the idea.

euclid
05-13-2010, 12:37 PM
There's an orange-coloured type of centipede that moves v fast and lives in our garden. I think it's called a wire-worm. I remember as a child the under-gardener picked one up and told me never to handle it as it could eat its way through my hand. It's amazing how this sort of complete nonsense sticks in your head. The same guy lent me his copy of Arabian Nights. I was about 10 at the time.

SirOtter
05-13-2010, 06:59 PM
FYI, Creepy-crawlers are actually an older (although I think they still sell them) 'bug oven' for kids where you put this goo into bug-shaped molds and bake them so you have little rubbery insects for play. http://www.amazon.com/Jakks-Pacific-55277-Crawlers-Bugmaker/dp/B000ETRF3W

I had no idea anyone still made those. I had one in the 60s and loved it.

Add another vote for bugs.

Chasing the Horizon
05-15-2010, 11:35 PM
My MC calls them "nasty crawly things with too many legs" :D Of course, that applies to pretty much every kind of bug for him.

In my town they call house centipedes "thousand leggers". In the town where I grew up they called them "silver fish" (which is totally inaccurate).

Here's a pic of the thing they're talking about. It's a type of centipede. http://i87.photobucket.com/albums/k148/cansaspillar/d1eddbfa37790296.jpg

And here's a pic of someone much braver than Wicked which I found while looking for the house centipede: http://i87.photobucket.com/albums/k148/cansaspillar/110634.jpg

Wicked
05-15-2010, 11:47 PM
And here's a pic of someone much braver than Wicked which I found while looking for the house centipede: http://i87.photobucket.com/albums/k148/cansaspillar/110634.jpg

It's entirely possible I know that guy. LOL :tongue

One pede keeper I know of lets those things bite him, so he can document the affects of the venom.

Another who keeps scorpions used to have a signature that said, "stung over 130 times, and still breathing".

I have no desire to catch up to either of them in their eccentricities. :D

Chasing the Horizon
05-16-2010, 12:15 AM
It's entirely possible I know that guy. LOL :tongue

One pede keeper I know of lets those things bite him, so he can document the affects of the venom.

Another who keeps scorpions used to have a signature that said, "stung over 130 times, and still breathing".

I have no desire to catch up to either of them in their eccentricities. :D
I used to have a pet centipede and a couple of pet millipedes (same type you have, I think--giant African black millipedes, I forget the scientific name). I posted that pic because I thought it was crazy, lol. Centipedes are MEAN. And that is a massive centipede.

Dot Hutchison
05-16-2010, 06:09 AM
I was raised in the South, and at least in my area we generally call them creepy-crawlies, bugs, creepers, or ew-just-squish-it-already!- oh, and any bug that looks like a worm (whether it actually has feet or not) tends to be called a worm, just like every brown soda is a Coke.

euclid
05-18-2010, 01:01 PM
Looking at that picture of the BIG centipede. Finding it hard to look away!
Wow! We have nothing that big over here, thank God! Which end is the front end?

Wicked
05-18-2010, 05:53 PM
Looking at that picture of the BIG centipede. Finding it hard to look away!
Wow! We have nothing that big over here, thank God! Which end is the front end?

The part that is curled around on the hand is the front end. There are a pair of "terminal legs" at the end of the centipede, that can confuse prey or predator about which end is which.