Scorpions (Chilopoda)

Scorpions are predatory arthropods that are related to spiders, mites, and ticks. There are over 1750 species of scorpions found worldwide (except for Antarctica). Scorpion stings can be painful, but are mostly harmless, unless there is an allergic reaction. A good rule of thumb is that the bigger the scorpion, the weaker the venom. All scorpions are nocturnal, so generally have poor eyesight. They do have excellent hearing and can detect vibrations in the air and ground. All scorpions fluoresce under UV light, which is thought to help them avoid lighted areas, so that predators won't be able to find them. Scorpions are unusual in that they give birth to live young, which ride around on the back of their mother until after their first moult.

Desert Hairy Scorpion

Hadrurus arizonensis

This species is the largest scorpion species in North America growing up to 5.5 inches (14 cm). It most often feeds on other insects and spiders, but when large enough, will also feed on small lizards and snakes. The Desert Hairy Scorpion has dark brown hairs on its body that help it to detect vibrations in the soil. It is found in the Southwestern US, in the Mojave and Sonoran deserts. This species typically lives 7-10 years in the wild, but can live for over 20 years in captivity.

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