In the 10th edition of Systema Naturae, 1758, Carl von Linné listed seven species of millipedes, all in the genus Julus. While we estimate that our planet may be home to over 80,000 millipede species, so far only about 12,000 species have been described. To promote rapid millipede species discovery and description, it is imperative to assemble a comprehensive species catalog of all existing nominal species.

Currently, we are working on such a global millipede species catalog. Initial millipede species lists were generated from the zoological record and the ‘Iconography,’ an index card catalog held in the Paris Museum. The Iconography was started by the renowned millipede expert, Henry-Wilfried Brölemann (1860-1933). Every species record is compared to its original description and the full bibliographic citation is attached to the species record. The Field Museum’s fantastic library harbors approximately 90% of the required literature. The species records are managed in a relational database. We expect that the global species catalog will be completed by 2012.