US flag Official website of the Department of Homeland Security

Archived Content

In an effort to keep current, the archive contains content from a previous administration or is otherwise outdated.

African Millipede Found by CBP Beagle Brigade at Atlanta Airport

Release Date: 
December 21, 2018

ATLANTA -- U. S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Agriculture Specialists working at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL) discovered a live giant African millipede that “hitchhiked” onboard a traveler’s suitcase from Africa.

Millieode found at ATL airport
African Millipede intercepted at Atlanta
Airport by CBP Agriculture Specialist

Tuesday morning, “Regal,” a member of the CBP Beagle Brigade on duty at ATL, alerted to a traveler’s checked bag at the international arrival baggage claim area.  During further inspection, a CBP Agriculture Specialist (CBPAS) found the live millipede inside a suitcase. The couple arrived on a flight from Johannesburg, South Africa and were destined for South Carolina.

The nearly six-inch African millipede was collected and secured as CBP is working with U.S. Departure of Agriculture Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service to arrange for a local insectarium to take the millipede.

 “CBP is on the frontline 24/7, searching for anything entering our country that could potentially harm our citizens,” said Carey Davis Atlanta CBP Area Port Director.  “Our beagle sniffing out this millipede highlights how valuable our canine members are to protecting the U.S.”

Milliped found by CBP K9 at ATL airport
CBP Beagle "Regal" and Millipede he
alerted to at Atlanta Airport

The couple was unsure how the millipede found its way into their baggage and was grateful to go home without the unwanted hitchhiker. CBPAS have been on the frontline at Ports of Entry nationwide inspecting shipments, cargo and baggage for any possible hitchhiking pests that may pose a threat to the U.S. agriculture industry.

CBP Agriculture Specialists have extensive training and experience in the biological sciences and agricultural inspection. On a typical day nationally, they inspect more than 1 million people as well as air, land and sea cargo imported to the United States, and intercept 4,638 prohibited meat, plant materials or animal products, including 352 agriculture pests and diseases.

View CBP Snapshot to learn some of what CBP achieves On a Typical Day.' and learn more about CBP’s agriculture protection mission.

Follow CBP operations in the Southeast on Twitter @CBPSouthEast.

Last modified: 
February 3, 2021