Ento-musings from the University of Kentucky Department of Entomology

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Fun with scorpions

I purchased a scorpion after getting a Chilean Rose Hair Tarantula (Grammostola Rosa), because I realized that having only one arachnid just wasn't enough. After recieving my scorpion, I began to construct a terrarium with the scorpion's specific requirements in mind.Emperor Scorpions are rarely seen because they tend to hide under whatever they can, leaving their hiding place only to hunt. However, a few weeks ago I began to see the scorpion alot more often because it had constructed a burrow, with two of the sides of the burrow being the walls of the terrarium. This was very exciting, but couldn't compare to the excitement I felt the morning when I noticed that my Emperor was covered in what looked like white foam, which on further inspection, turned out to be none other than a little over a dozen baby scorpions (or “scorplings”).
I know a little bit about this large species of scorpions (pandinus imperator), and specifically, that the babies cling to the mother, who feeds them. From birth, they change from a ghostly white to the deep black of their parents. When they grow to adulthood I will have to break them up in to groups of two and keep them separated, or else risk cannibalism. Emperors have a 9 month gestation period (or 7 to 12 months depending upon temperature and humidity), which is a fact I find very interesting.For an aspiring entomologist such as myself, this is a great opportunity and I look forward to watching these amazing arthropods grow and flourish from tiny scorplings to adult scorpions.

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