Is it a spider? Is it a scorpion? What is it?
These were a few questions I found myself asking last week when an elusive Tailless Whip Scorpion made its way into the office. One of the technicians was out on a service job when he caught the mysterious arachnid and brought it in for further observation. It currently sets in a terrarium on my boss’s desk where we feed it crickets and watch how it behaves behaviors.
As my boss let the Whip Scorpion crawl up and down his arm during while being interviewed by a local news station, I wondered to myself, “What exactly is a Tailless Whip Scorpion?” and “Are they Safe?”
What Is It?
Most of us here in Mesa, AZ are well versed in most arachnids. We encounter spiders and scorpions all the time. One arachnid we rarely come across is the less famous Tailless Whip Scorpion. They are common in the southwest United States, and parts of northern Mexico. These Tailless Whip Scorpions walk sideways on their six legs, and are very good climbers. They lack the rear stinger that most of us Arizonans have grown a custom to on the scorpions we regularly see. They do have pedipalps, or pinchers, that they use to capture their prey. Like other spiders and scorpions, Whip Scorpions dine primarily on other insects.
Are They Safe?
Tailless Whip Scorpions are safe to humans. They can use their pedipalps to defend themselves if needed, but rarely ever feel threatened. If you can get past their disturbing appearance, they are actually safe to hold and touch. They are non-venomous, but can spray an acidic enzyme that is primarily used to stun its prey.
Other Scorpions ARE Dangerous!
Unlike the Tailless Whip Scorpion, other types of scorpions found here in Arizona should be considered very dangerous. If you are finding these scorpions in and around your property, contact a local pest control professional today!
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Mesa, AZ 85204
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Peoria, AZ 85345
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Mesa, AZ 85210
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Mesa, AZ 85205