Woodlice are found in almost every home in the UK and many pensioners keep them as pets when cats, dogs and hamsters are unsuited to a particular residential environment.

Woodlice are extremely easy to look after and a small tree left in the corner of a room will sustain a colony of several dozen for at least 60 years.  With patience, they can be trained to play whist and make Yorkshire pudding, and when they’re rolled up, they can be used as organic ball bearings or decoration on children’s party cakes.

Woodlice are isopod crustaceans with seven pairs of nearly equal legs, and this also makes them very good at netball and similar sports.

The world’s largest woodlouse is the Eniscidae titanicus species of southern Columbia, which has been known to eat canoes while they’re being paddled by native tribespeople and has been used to carry drugs when mules are being rested.

This species is not suitable as a domestic pet.