As we are nearing warmer weather, many Arizona residents are gearing up for their yearly pest control services and preventative measures. One of the most hated insects native to Arizona is the Scorpion. Their painful sting can be dangerous, especially to small children, pets, or elderly.
Scorpions are arachnids and are related to spiders, mites, and ticks. Scorpions have 8 legs, an extended segmented body, an erectile tail, and a stinger. The first segment of the scorpions body is called the cephalothorax and includes the head, eyes, mouth, claws, and 4 of its legs. The claws are used to seize prey and defend the scorpion against predators.
The second segment is called the Opisthosoma, or the abdomen. This segment includes the sexual organs, lungs, and the tail. The entire body of the scorpion is covered in a tough “armor” called the cuticle which surrounds the body and is covered in fine hairs that work as balancing organs.
As many Arizona residents know, scorpions can deliver a painful sting. The sting contains venom that can cause swelling and numbness. In extreme cases some people may experience convulsions, difficulty breathing, and other allergic reactions. The scorpion sting is not considered a significant medical threat to an average person, however in the cases of allergic reaction the bit can turn deadly. Small children and pets are more susceptible to the effects of the sting.
Reproduction & Living Habits
Scorpions like very dry climates, which makes Arizona the prime location for scorpion activity. However, the scorpion’s body is very sensitive to the loss of moisture, so they prefer to stay in shady areas during the day. Scorpions are often found in underground holes or under rocks during the day. Scorpions are nocturnal and will hunt during the night.
Female scorpions carry their young inside their bodies. When the eggs hatch inside the mother that will leave the mothers body and ride of her back until they have matured through their first molt. The baby scorpions are miniatures of their parents and are complete with a stinger and venom from a very young age. Scorpions will go through 5-7 molts before they are full grown. Like many other insects the scorpion sheds its outer shell during each molt, which gives them more room to grow. Scorpions live 3-5 years in normal conditions, but in some cases they have been known to live up to 15 years.
Scorpions Infestations and Prevention
Scorpions do not leave signs of their existence behind, making an infestation hard to locate except for the sightings of the live insects. Scorpions usually become a problem for homeowners when they leave their natural habitats in search of food. Scorpions enter a home or structure by finding small holes, cracks, gaps in doors, walls, windows or foundation. Scorpions can also hitchhike into a home inside boxes, on firewood, in potted plants, or inside furniture. Once inside scorpions will find a safe location usually in basements, crawl spaces or hidden under cabinets.
You can limit your risk of scorpion exposure by performing regular home maintenance every year in the spring and fall. This will reduce the number of places the scorpions can enter the home and keep you safe. A yearly chemical spray is also recommended for Arizona residents, especially those who know scorpions are present in their area. Azex Pest Solutions is experienced with scorpion extermination and can help keep your home scorpion free this year. Give us a call to schedule a treatment!