Brief SummaryRead full entry
BiologyThe emperor scorpion engages in an elaborate courtship dance in which the male holds on to the female's pincers or chelicerae, and moves around to find a suitable place on the ground to deposit his spermatophore. Once deposited, he manoeuvres the female over the area so she can receive the sperm (4) (8) (9). The female gives birth to between 9 and 32 live young after a seven to nine month gestation period, and they remain with her for some time. The young are white when born, but darken with each moult, reaching sexual maturity at four months (3). The emperor scorpion shows a degree of social behaviour, with burrows often inhabited by 15 or more individuals (10). The emperor scorpion feeds on insects, arachnids, mice and small lizards, hunting them at night using its sensory hairs (trichobothria) (4). It has poor eyesight and is preyed upon by bats, birds, small mammals, large spiders, centipedes, large lizards and other scorpions (4) (7). As with other scorpions that possess large, strong pincers, the emperor scorpion uses the pincers to kill and manipulate prey, reserving the sting for larger prey or for use in self-defence (5) (8).