Last updated on June 29th, 2023 at 02:46 pm
How big do Emperor Scorpions get? This species is huge, and most people consider it to be the second largest scorpion so far discovered…
The emperor scorpion also known as Pandinus imperator is a native species particular to the savannas and rainforests of West Africa. They can be found in abundance, in the forests of Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Mali, Senegal, Ghana, etc and are one of the largest scorpions.
In fact, this species has been recorded at 8 inches (20cm) long, including the tail. This means it is second in size only to the Asian forest scorpion, which is about an inch longer.
Scorpions are nocturnal creatures that prefer humid conditions and high humidity levels that suit their body temperature. That’s why you rarely come across them in the winter or in very cold parts of the world.
How long do emperor scorpions live?
On an average the emperor scorpions live for five to eight years. In the wild survival is tough but in captivity, under proper care they easily live for eight years.
The scientists have not yet figured out the exact reason but scorpions glow under ultraviolet light. The scorpion’s cuticle or outer layer absorbs the UV light and reflects it back as visible light. This has made study and conservation of scorpion species around the world much easier.
If somebody loses their pet emperor scorpion in the house all they need to do is go looking for them with a black light in the dark.
Do emperor scorpions make good pets?
The emperor scorpion does not typically show aggressive qualities unless it feels threatened. This is the reason most experts recommend the emperor scorpion species as pet for beginners.
Many people believe they are more prone to pinching you than stinging you, as their first instinct.
The emperor scorpions are not particularly lethal when compared to some other scorpion species. They are clean, quiet and require very low maintenance. Their sting is similar to a bee sting.
If you’d like to learn more about keeping this species as a pet, head over to my Emperor Scorpion husbandry guide.
Emperor scorpion size inches
The emperor scorpions can grow upto 8 inch in average length, making it one of the largest scorpion species in the world.
It takes about one year for the adult emperor scorpions to reach sexual maturity. The emperor scorpions have elaborate mating rituals and the average gestation period for the species is around 9 months.
In some cases, female emperor scorpions eat the male after the mating ritual is completed. The young scorpions are defenceless at birth and are carried on the back of their mother.
What do emperor scorpions eat?
The giant forest scorpion species is typically found in hot rainforests nestled under a pile of leaf litter or hiding in their burrows. They hold still until the prey animal comes close enough to ambush it. They sense when the prey is near them by the vibration that the prey produces as it moves.
In the wild emperor scorpions are also known to burrow through 6 feet of termite mounds in order to hunt for food. The emperor scorpions usually eat other arthopods, a variety of insects, and sometimes they also prey upon small vertebrates.
They can also survive on earthworms and grubs. If its difficult times and prey is scarce the mother emperor scorpion will feed on her own babies.
The scorpions need to predigest their food before consuming it. Once the prey is immobile the emperor scorpion will secrete digestive juices onto its food to liquify it before consumption.
Emperor scorpions for sale
While keeping a scorpion as a pet might be considered an unconventional choice, it is entirely legal to do so. The Asian Forest scorpions, emperor scorpion, or desert hairy scorpion are all scorpion species that are suitable to be good pets.
The emperor scorpions are the most common scorpion species in American pet trade.
It is always recommended to do extensive research before getting a scorpion in the house as a pet. Always go to reputable breeders so that you don’t need to spend money to get the proper medical attention for an unhealthy emperor scorpion.
A 10-gallon tank will be perfectly suitable for the emperor scorpion in the house. The temperature gradient with in the tank should be between 70 and 95 degrees Fahrenheit. Also, some live plants should be kept in the tank for the scorpion to nestle in.
Emperor scorpion price
Depending on the appearance, age, gender and size of the emperor scorpion the prices may vary. Generally, the emperor scorpion is considered to be a exotic pet and can cost between $25 to $100.
Seek out a reputed and experienced reptile breeder, who can help you buy the right scorpion for you. Most pet stores have limited knowledge about the animal’s care and age. Breeders generally have a better knowledge of care requirements and health history.
A well-rounded emperor scorpion diet consists of different insects like, Dubia roaches, superworms, waxworms, mealworms, hornworms and beetles.
When feeding your pet emperor scorpion the following things should be kept in mind:
- Adult emperor scorpions should be fed every alternate day and the young ones should be fed daily.
- They should always have access to fresh chemical free water. Never forget to use a shallow water bowl or else the scorpion may drown.
- Scorpions are exclusively nocturnal creatures and should only be fed at night.
- Large crickets or uneaten crickets can attack a small or pregnant females
- Give the scorpion mineral supplements, vitamin, and calcium supplement at least once a week.
Emperor scorpion venom effects
The different scorpion species has its own, one of a kind venom; each with differing levels of toxicity. Even before the young scorpions grow into adults, they have substantial amount of venom in them.
The emperor scorpion might look lethal, but generally people are not gravely affected by their sting. Although for the people that are allergic to scorpion venom in general, should naturally be more careful.
As most people are not aware of their allergies before a scorpion stings them, it is always better to keep safe distance from a scorpion that you chance upon somewhere.
The interesting fact is large size emperor scorpions crush their prey with their big claws before eating time and rarely uses their long tails to sting the prey. Only the young emperor scorpions sting their prey.
What type of venom does an emperor scorpion have?
The venom of emperor scorpion is produced from telson. That is the part at the end of their long tail.
At the tip of telson is the needle-like sharp structure called the aculeus. The aculeus is the apparatus that delivers the venom.
It is exhausting for the scorpion to produce the venom inside telson. That is why the adult emperor scorpions produce the venom in moderation and ration its use. A scorpion can control how potent the venom should be and how much needs to be produces.
Depending on whether it is used for self-defense or for subduing the prey the quantity of venom produced, is adjusted.
The venom of the emperor scorpion is made of neurotoxins, a form of complex molecules. The neurotoxins contains in them amino acids that are 60-70 cross linked. Namely pandinotoxin and imperatoxin make up the venom of emperor scorpions. These neurotoxins directly affect the nervous system of its prey.
FAQ relating to how big emperor scorpions get
How big is the biggest emperor scorpion?
The emperor scorpion is the third largest species of scorpion found in the world. Coming only after the Giant Forest Scorpion and Rock Scorpion when it comes to large scorpion types. The longest recorded length of this species is 7.9 inches.
The emperor scorpions shed their exoskeleton entirely, many times as they grow. When they are fully grown it is not easy to differentiate between a male and a female emperor scorpion.
Some rare varieties of emperor scorpions are green or dark drown. Their overall color darkens with age which later helps them to camouflage in the tropical forest, between the leaves.
Are emperor scorpions lethal?
Getting stung by an emperor scorpion will never be considered fun. Although, with a few exceptions most scorpions can’t severely harm humans. Out of the two thousand species of scorpions discovered only 25 of them can cause serious damage to adult human health.
The small children are in greater danger just because they are smaller in size and sting from certain scorpions can be life threatening for them. Luckily antivenom is abundantly available in medical facilities, and death by scorpion sting is extremely rare nowadays.
The mild venom of the large pincers of the emperor scorpion is not lethal for humans.
Are emperor scorpions friendly?
Despite of the large size of the emperor scorpions they are quiet docile and does not generally act aggressively without being provoked. Still they should be kept under close watch in houses with small children and pets.
What eats an emperor scorpion?
The emperor scorpions have mild venom and are easy meals for different species of creatures in the wild. Many mammals, big centipedes, bat, birds, lizards and arachnids snack on emperor scorpions.
The emperor scorpions are not considered to be endangered species but their number in the wild are steadily decreasing with the increasing rate of deforestation.