A previously unknown species has been discovered lurking in the parks of Los Angeles and Orange counties. But step away from the microscope and the Los Angeles thread millipede (Illacme socal) becomes a lot less intimidating. With the publication late last month of a paper formally introducing the critter, the Los Angeles thread millipede joins roughly 12,000 other named millipede species worldwide. That Christmas, while visiting his family in Los Angeles, Marek and his wife drove out to Whiting Ranch to see if they could find the same animal. They are important yet incredibly vulnerable little creatures: They don't sting or bite and most, including the Los Angeles thread, are blind.