55 Most Popular Questions about Scorpions

55 Most Popular Questions about Scorpions

I have selected some of the most commonly asked questions about pet scorpions, covering topics such as their behavior, aggression, diet, molting, limb loss, and more.

So, if you are thinking of keeping scorpions as pets, or simply want to learn more about these interesting animals, you have come to the right place.

What distinguishes this format is its ability to provide a comprehensive and concentrated source of valuable information. Without further ado let’s get started.

General Questions about Scorpions

1. What are scorpions? Are they insects?

Scorpions belong to the class Arachnida, along with spiders, ticks, mites, etc. They are not insects. Unlike Insects, which have 6 legs, scorpions have 8 legs.

2. Are scorpions suitable as pets?

From my perspective, scorpions can indeed be wonderful pets for those who are prepared to accommodate their unique needs.

They offer several advantages, including minimal maintenance requirements, straightforward tank setup, extended lifespan, captivating behaviors, and a low need for constant attention.

At the same time, scorpions might not suit everyone due to their venomous nature, limited interaction, low activity levels, and specific dietary requirements (live food).

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3. What are the most common types of pet scorpions?

Here are some of the most popular scorpion species which are commonly kept as pets

Scorpions species
Pandinus Imperator (Emperor Scorpion)
Heterometrus sp. (Asian Forest Scorpion)
Hadrurus arizonensis (Arizona Giant Hairy Scorpions)
Scorpio maurus (Large Clawed Scorpion)
Hadogenes troglodytes (Flat rock scorpions)
Pandinoides cavimanus (Red-Clawed Scorpion)

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4. How long can I expect my scorpion to live?

On average, pet scorpions can live anywhere from 5 to 10 years. It is important to remember that their lifespan depends on the species, living conditions, and environmental factors.

For example, if we take the Three Keeled Bark Scorpions (Janalychas tricarinatus), despite its incredibly fast metabolism (of course, compared to other scorpions), this species can only live up to 5 years. At the same time, there are some species, such as Flat rock scorpions, that can live up to 30 years.

Under optimal conditions and good care, scorpions can live a long life in captivity.

5. Do veterinarians treat pet scorpions?

As far as I know, veterinary schools do not include scorpion care in their programs, so finding proper medical attention for them can be challenging.

Scorpions have different physiology. Because of their calcified shell (exoskeleton), there is little anybody can do when they get sick or infected.

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6. Can I breed scorpions at home?

Yes, most species of scorpions can be bred at home.

In some cases, the breeding process is so straightforward that it does not even require another scorpion for mating, as these scorpions reproduce through parthenogenesis (asexually), for example, Janalychas Tricarinatus.

7. How to tell the difference between a male and a female scorpion?

Scorpions are sexually dimorphic. The main problem though is that identifying the gender can be tricky and may require some expertise.

For example, in most species, male scorpions have more pectines, which are comb-like structures located on the underside of their bodies, near the abdomen. Female scorpions have fewer pectines. Additionally, the metasoma, or tail, of male scorpions tends to be narrower and more elongated compared to females.

In some species, females can be larger and bulkier than males. However, this is not always the case, as size can vary among species.

8. Are scorpions nocturnal?

Yes, they are primarily nocturnal creatures, meaning they are most active during the night.

Scorpions prefer to avoid direct sunlight and extreme heat during the day. They hunt, feed, and breed mostly during nighttime.

9. Do scorpions sleep?

Yes, but they don’t sleep in the traditional sense. According to the study, scorpions have three states: activity, alert immobility, and relaxed immobility.

The scorpion’s body posture showed differences in alertness and relaxation, indicating a state similar to sleep, with changes in heart rate and arousal levels.

Scorpions do not have a regular sleeping schedule. Even during the daytime they only have brief periods of rest sporadically.

10. Do scorpions feel pain?

Currently, there is hardly any research on this issue. So, it’s still unclear whether scorpions feel pain or not.

Historically, scientists suggested that scorpions merely react mechanically to stimuli, implying a lack of central processing and decision-making in their responses.

The main problem here is that the definition of pain cannot be fully applied to scorpions because of their nervous system. Scorpions are arachnids and their nervous system is different from that of mammals.

11. How do you tell if a scorpion is aggressive?

If a scorpion displays defensive behaviors like raising its tail and spreading its pincers, it is a sign of stress/aggression.

Keep in mind that scorpions generally try to avoid contact whenever possible. They do not attack unless you pose an immediate threat to them (for example, stepping on them, grabbing their tail, etc.). In such situations, they simply have no choice but to sting in self-defense.

12. What should I look for when choosing a scorpion as a pet?

When choosing a scorpion as a pet, especially if you are inexperienced in caring for them, consider several factors.

  • Prioritize safety. Opt for less venomous species or those with milder venom if you are a beginner.
  • Environment. Consider the climate where you live as scorpions have diverse temperature and humidity requirements. Ensure you can provide the necessary environmental conditions for your chosen species.
  • Size. Lastly, take into account the scorpion’s size, as larger species will require more space compared to smaller ones.

13. What do scorpions eat?

Scorpions are opportunistic predators. They are strictly carnivorous in nature. So, they will not eat fruits and vegetables.

Scorpions prey on a range of small creatures within their habitat, including insects (crickets, roaches, etc.), worms, centipedes, spiders, small rodents, and even other scorpions, with their diet varying based on their size.

14. How do scorpions hunt?

Most scorpion species are ambush hunters.

Because of their slow metabolism, they can stay still for a long time (days), which helps them catch prey.

15. How often should you feed pet scorpions?

Once a week will be more than enough.

16. How long can scorpions go without food?

Many scorpions can easily go without food for months. So, there is no need to panic since it is quite natural for them due to their very slow metabolism.

For example, some scorpion species have been documented to survive without food for over a year while remaining in good health.

17. Do scorpions hibernate?

Hibernation is a state of reduced metabolic activity and lowered body temperature.

Despite already having one of the slowest metabolisms, certain scorpion species enter a state of semi-hibernation during the winter months when temperatures drop.

18. Can scorpions feel vibrations?

Yes, they can. Even more, scorpions primarily detect their prey through vibrations sensed by specialized organs (pectines).

In addition, they have also fine sensory hairs on their pedipalps, which can detect airborne vibrations, and small sensory organs at the tips of their legs that pick up ground vibrations.

19. Do scorpions have good eyesight?

Despite having several lateral eyes (from 2 to 5 pairs) as well as a pair of eyes on top (median eyes), scorpions have very poor eyesight.

They cannot see in the dark. Scientists believe that the primary function of their eyes is to detect light and spatial discrimination.

20. Do scorpions make noises?

Scorpions typically do not produce noises as a form of communication.

However, in certain species such as the Scorpio maurus (Large Clawed Scorpion), males have been observed to generate sounds by rapidly striking the posterior half of the mesosoma against the ground.

21. Why do scorpions glow in the dark

The fascinating fact is that scientists have discovered the mechanism of luminescence in scorpions. However, the reasons behind this phenomenon remain unanswered.

There are numerous theories, with one of the most plausible suggesting that the cuticle functions as a whole-body photon collector. This information is then relayed to the central nervous system, potentially aiding in the detection of shelter.

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Questions about Keeping and Housing Scorpions

22. What do I need to set up a scorpion habitat?

  • Enclosure: plastic container or glass aquarium with a secure lid to maintain humidity and prevent escapes.
  • Substrate: Play sand or/and coconut coir fiber substrate.
  • Thermometer and Hygrometer:To monitor temperature and humidity levels in the habitat.
  • Water Dishes:for freshwater.
  • Heating (If needed): To maintain the appropriate temperature.
  • Hiding places: All decorations used in the terrarium with scorpions should serve one purpose – to provide as much hiding space as possible. So, make sure to provide plenty of dark hiding spots using rocks, stones, and other decorations to enrich their environment.

23. How do you set up a scorpion habitat?

If you already have everything listed above, setting up a scorpion habitat becomes a straightforward process.

  1. Choose a suitable enclosure.
  2. Add some substrate (some scorpion species are burrowers and will require deep substrate).
  3. Provide aged freshwater.
  4. Include hiding spots and climbing materials.
  5. Maintain proper temperature and humidity.

24. What is the minimum scorpion tank size?

It depends on the size of the scorpion. Here are the recommended minimum dimensions:

  • Length: Twice the length of the scorpion’s body.
  • Width: One and a half times the length of the scorpion’s body.
  • Height: Equal to the length of the scorpion’s body.

Important:

  • Your setup should allow for the necessary temperature and humidity to be created and maintained! 
  • Consider the species of scorpion. For example, some are arboreal, meaning they’ll require a taller enclosure.

25. Do scorpions need lighting?

Scorpions do not require lighting like reptiles or plants. They are nocturnal animals. Therefore, a natural ambient light will be enough.

26. Do scorpions need UVB light?

No, they do not. UVB light is needed for reptiles and some amphibians that need it to metabolize vitamin D3.

Note: Sometimes people transfer various practices from one animal to another, thinking that it will have the same positive effect, but that’s not the case.

27. Do scorpions need water?

Yes, scorpions need water but they don’t drink it like some other pets. Instead, they obtain moisture from their food and the environment.

In captivity, it is still recommended to provide a water dish and occasionally mist their enclosure to provide them with humidity. However, it is also essential not to make the enclosure too damp, as scorpions are susceptible to fungal infections.

28. Can scorpions swim?

No, if a scorpion stays in the water for too long it will drown.

29. What is the importance of providing hiding spots for scorpions?

Hiding spots make scorpions feel safe and allow them to engage in natural behaviors like molting, resting, and hunting.

30. Do scorpions need a heat source?

Scorpions may need a heat source (such as a heat lamp or heat mat) in their tank depending on the area you are living in. For example, if you live in a colder climate, you will definitely need a heat source to maintain the appropriate temperature in the tank.

31. Why is my scorpion inactive?

They can be inactive due to factors like molting, stress, health issues, or inadequate environmental conditions.

Additionally, it is worth noting that scorpions are naturally low-active animals. So, it’s not uncommon for them to display minimal activity.

Questions about Handling Scorpions

32. Are scorpions venomous?

Yes, they are. All scorpions possess venom, as it is a crucial aspect of their predatory and defensive mechanisms. However, the potency of the venom varies significantly among species.

33. How dangerous are scorpion stings to humans?

There are more than 2500 scorpion species and, only about 20 are truly life-threatening. These dangerous species and usually found in tropical and subtropical arid regions and belong to the Buthidae family.

Others have venom that is relatively mild (like a wasp sting) and poses little threat to healthy adults. Unpleasant, yes, but nothing too serious. Nonetheless, young children, the elderly, or those with allergies can be at much greater risk.

So, the answer depends purely on the species.

34. What are the symptoms of a scorpion sting?

Envenomation often results in an immediate sharp burning pain followed by numbness. The wound might swell up and feel tingly.

It can also lead to muscle twitching, fast eye movements, rapid heartbeat, high blood pressure, vomiting, fever, and difficulty breathing.

Generally, these symptoms can last from 3 to 72 hours.

35. How do you handle scorpions?

First of all, do not do any sudden movements.

  1. Slowly place your hand in front of the scorpion.
  2. Use a brush or pen to nudge it from any side.
  3. The scorpion will likely turn to face the “threat.”
  4. Continue nudging and gently pushing until it backs up onto your hand.

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36. Can scorpions be trained?

No, scorpions purely operate on their instinctual nature. Their cognitive abilities and nervous system are not developed for more complex behaviors like training or performing tricks.

37. Do scorpions recognize their owners?

No, they do not recognize their owners and do not bond with them.

As I have already said, this is just beyond their abilities.

38. Do scorpions like to be petted or touched?

No, absolutely not! Scorpions do not like to be handled or touched. Do not trust any article claiming otherwise. 

39. Can scorpions be tamed?

There is no way you can tame the scorpions as they lack the capacity to understand and learn that play is safe for them. This behavior is beyond their abilities and nervous system.

40. How do scorpions communicate?

Scorpions communicate through physical contact and chemical signals. They use their pincers and stingers to interact with each other, engaging in behaviors such as aggression, courtship, and mating.

41. Are male or female scorpions more aggressive?

There is not a significant difference in aggressiveness between males and females, except when the female is carrying and protecting her offspring on her back. During this time, she becomes considerably more aggressive than males.

42. Do scorpions have personalities?

Absolutely. They have preferences in terms of food, shell selection, activity levels, and interactions. Some of them are more active and boisterous, while others might be shy and skittish.

43. Can scorpions jump?

No, their muscle structure and exoskeleton do not allow ысщкзшщты to perform actions like jumping.

Health Questions and Molting

44. How do scorpions grow?

Scorpions have external exoskeletons that limit their growth. Therefore, to grow in size, they have to shed their old shells. The process of replacing the exoskeleton is often called molting.

Molting is an inherent cyclic process that consists of 4 phases:

  1. pre-molt,
  2. molt,
  3. post-molt.
  4. inter-molt.

45. Can scorpion regenerate lost limbs?

Yes, scorpions can regenerate lost limbs through molting. However, the regenerated limb may not be identical to the original one in terms of size or functionality.

46. What causes limb loss in scorpions?

Failed molts, injury, disease, poor nutrition, and mishandling are common reasons why scorpions lose limbs.

47. How often do scorpions molt?

On average, scorpions molt about 5 to 7 times before reaching maturity. The interval between molts can range from a few weeks to several months, depending on factors such as age, species, environmental conditions, and food availability.

For example, young scorpions molt more frequently (weeks) because they grow rapidly. However, after reaching maturity, adult scorpions typically molt to replace worn-out exoskeletons or repair injuries.

48. Do scorpions eat their old shell?

No, scorpions do not eat their old exoskeletons after molting as they hunt live prey.

49. What are the black patches on my scorpion?

In most cases, black patches on a scorpion indicate that you have too high humidity. These are usually signs of fungal infections (mycosis).

Questions about Compatibility and other Tankmates

50. Do scorpions get lonely?

No, scorpions are solitary creatures.

Even though some species (for example, Arizona bark scorpions (Centruroides sculpturatus and Centruroides exilicauda)) can be often found in groups, especially during the winter season, they are still not considered to be social animals.

51. Can scorpions live together?

While it is possible for scorpions to coexist, it is important to consider cannibalism, even

There is a very high chance that larger scorpions will perceive smaller ones as potential prey rather than companions. All in all, scorpions rarely get along with each other.

52. Can scorpions live with other pets?

No, it will be a very bad idea due to potential conflicts and harm.

Scorpions are predatory by nature and may view smaller animals as prey. Additionally, interactions between different species can result in stress or injury to both parties.

53. Do scorpions need companionship?

No, they do not. Scorpions do not get lonely and do not need any companionship besides mating.

54. Do scorpions have predators?

Of course they do.

In their natural habitats, some of their predators include certain species of birds, mammals like rodents and shrews, reptiles (such as lizards and snakes), and even other predatory arthropods like centipedes.

55. Are scorpions territorial?

On average, scorpions can exhibit territorial behavior, especially when it comes to defending their shelter.

In Conclusion

In this article, you can find the most commonly asked questions about scorpions.

If you did not find the question you were looking for, feel free to contact me, and I’ll do my best to help you.

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