Arizona Bark Scorpion

Centruroides sculpturatus

Where Do They Live?

Image of Two Arizona Bark Scorpions on Cardboard

Like the name suggests, they are primarily found in Arizona where they have become a major pest arthropod. They can however also be found in California, Nevada, Utah and New Mexico. As for in the wild, they are night hunters and typically hide during the day and come out just as the sun sets. Since they are a “sit and wait” predator they will often times find a spot once it gets dark to wait for unwary prey to pass by. During the day they usually hide under rocks, leaf litter and piles of wood or bark.

Are They Dangerous

Image of an Arizona Bark Scorpion on Cardboard

Almost all scorpions front a pair of menacing claws and a stinger loaded with venom; but despite the appearance their sting is comparable to that of a bee. This scorpion however is no bee sting! The Arizona Bark Scorpion is the most venomous scorpion in North America, in which their venom is lethal to humans in some rare cases. If stung in an extremity such as the arm or hand, it is possible for the entire hand or arm to be paralyzed/numbed for up to 72 hours.

Do Scorpions Glow?

Image of Arizona Bark Scorpions Fluorescing Under a Black Light

You may have heard that if you walk into the desert at night with a black light pointed at the ground you may see glowing scorpions all over the desert floor. Well, it is true! Most scorpions fluoresce under a black light which makes detecting them at night relatively easy. The effect is produced by a substance in the hyaline layer; a part of their exoskeleton. The purpose of this glow in nature is not fully understood as newly molted scorpions do not glow until their shell/exoskeleton has hardened.