25 Cool Scorpion Facts Most People May Not Be Aware Of

Posted by , Updated on May 21, 2024

While learning more about scorpions might intensify an individual’s fear of them, it’s important to understand that the common fear and revulsion they provoke—from intense disgust to absolute fear—are unwarranted. This misconception is similar to the one about certain spiders, as explained in our article ’25 Adorable Spiders That Are Not As Scary As You Think’. Our list of 25 fascinating facts about scorpions aims to showcase the incredible nature of these invertebrates. Scorpions are extraordinary creatures with impressive abilities. It is widely known that they have eight legs, large pincers like a crab, and a tail with a venomous stinger at the end, in addition to their remarkable adaptability. But, did you know that scorpions have a high resistance to radioactivity? Or that they’ve remained largely unchanged for over 400 million years on Earth? Continue reading to uncover how amazing scorpions truly are. From their unique ability to glow under specific ultraviolet light spectrums to their surprising genetic links to ticks, mites, and spiders, rather than crustaceans like crayfish or crabs, here are 25 surprising facts about scorpions that many people might not know.


There about 1750 different scorpion species with 13 extant families known to scientists.

scorpionSource and image: en.wikipedia.org

All scorpions are venomous but only about 25 species are known to have venom capable of killing a human being.

scorpionSource: en.wikipedia.org, image: flickr.com

Scorpions are one of the oldest animals on Earth. Their evolutionary history goes back to the Silurian era 430 million years ago. They evolved from giant scorpion-like creatures that emerged from the sea and have remained morphologically unchanged until now.

Scorpion ancestorSource and image: en.wikipedia.org

Their lifespan is not very long though. Scorpions usually live up to 8 years in the wild.

ScorpionSource: scorpionworlds.com, image: en.wikipedia.org

Scorpions have excellent adaptation abilities. They are found on all continents with the exception of Antarctica.

ScorpionSource: en.wikipedia.org, image: commons.wikimedia.org

Although they resemble crustaceans like crayfish and crabs, scorpions are actually more closely related to ticks, mites and spiders.

MAURUS PALMATUSSource: nationalgeographic.com, image: en.wikipedia.org

Scorpions can slow down their metabolism when food is rare. They can survive without food for up to one year.

ScorpionSource and image: en.wikipedia.org

Scorpions range in size greatly – the smallest species is just about 9 mm (0.35 in) long while the largest species can reach over 20 cm (8 in).

ScorpionSource and image: en.wikipedia.org

Scorpions tend to live in areas with temperatures ranging from 68 to 99 degrees F (20 to 37 C) but they can handle much more extreme temperatures. Researchers have even frozen scorpions overnight, only to put them in the sun the next day and watch them thaw out and walk away.

ScorpionSource: nationalgeographic.com, image: commons.wikimedia.org

Despite having 6 to 12 eyes, scorpions have poor vision. Instead, they locate their prey through scent and ground vibrations.

scorpionSource: news.softpedia.com, image: en.wikipedia.org

The belief that scorpions commit suicide by stinging themselves to death when surrounded by fire is a myth. They are not known to have such suicidal behavior and if even they had, their venom has no effect on themselves.

scorpionSource: sheppardsoftware.com, image: pixabay.com

Scorpions are known to glow when exposed to certain wavelengths of ultraviolet light. Scientists are not sure of the purpose for this fluorescence but it might help the scorpions detect light.

ScorpionSource: en.wikipedia.org, image: commons.wikimedia.org

Scorpion babies are called scorplings. They ride on their mother´s back until their first molt.

scorplingsSource: softschools.com, image: commons.wikimedia.org

People have been fascinated with scorpions for millennia. The arachnids played an important role in some old civilizations´ mythologies and a zodiac sign was named after them.

scorpionSource: factsanddetails.com, image: pixabay.com

Scorpions can ingest food only in a liquid form; they have external digestion. The digestive juices from the gut are egested onto the food and the digested food is then sucked in liquid form.

ScorpionSource: en.wikipedia.org, image: flickr.com

Females are usually larger than males. Occasionally, the female even kills and eats the male after mating.

scorpionSource: scorpionworlds.com, image: flickr.com

As nocturnal animals, scorpions usually only come out at night. In fact, some species spend up to 97% of their lives in their burrows.

scorpionSource: factsanddetails.com, image: en.wikipedia.org

Similarly to cockroaches, scorpions are great at reflecting radiation, which makes their chances of surviving a nuclear attack much higher than that of most other animal species.

scorpionSource: www.theguardian.com, image: flickr.com

Scorpions always try to subdue their prey mechanically with their pincers, saving their stingers only for a last resort because it can take up to a week or more to generate a new venom supply.

scorpionSource: factsanddetails.com, image: en.wikipedia.org

Colloquially known as the deathstalker, the Israeli yellow scorpion is considered the most dangerous scorpion species. Its sting is exceptionally painful and it can kill an adult man.

DeathstalkerSource: en.wikipedia.org, image: commons.wikimedia.org

Scorpions are used in the pharmaceutical industry. In Pakistan, for example, farmers in the Thatta District are paid about US$100 for each 40 gram scorpion. 60 gram specimens are reported to fetch at least US$50,000. The trade is illegal though.

ScorpionSource and image: en.wikipedia.org

In some parts of China, fried scorpions is a traditional dish. In Chinese medicine, scorpion wine is even used as an analgesic and antidote.

fried scorpionSource and image: en.wikipedia.org

To reach its adult size, a scorpion molts up to 7 times. During the first hours after molting, the scorpion is particularly vulnerable to an attack as the new body armor takes some time to harden.

scorpion moltSource: factsanddetails.com, image: commons.wikimedia.org

While the emperor scorpion is generally considered the largest scorpion species, it is the Heterometrus Swammerdami scorpion that holds the actual record for being the world´s largest scorpion ever found at 9 inch (23 cm). This species lives in Sri Lanka and India.

Heterometrus SwammerdamiSource and image: en.wikipedia.org

Some scorpion poisons are 100,000 more powerful than cyanide. What makes the death rate relatively low is the fact that the dose of venom injected by scorpion is usually very small.

scorpion stingerSource: factsanddetails.com, image: commons.wikimedia.org

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