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How many legs does a centipede have?

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Quick Answer

Centipedes can have between 15 and 171 pairs of legs, equating to between 30 and 342 legs. Each species of centipede has a different number of legs.

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Full Answer

Although the name "centipede" means "100 legs," this is a misnomer. Centipedes always have an odd number of leg pairs, so regardless of the species, a centipede never has 100 legs.

Centipedes have one pair of legs per body segment. Some species of centipedes are born with as few as 14 segments and leg pairs, and acquire additional segments and pairs each time they molt, while other species are born with a full set of segments and legs. During molting, centipedes have the ability to regenerate any legs that they lose.

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