Whip Tail Scorpion Vinagaroon
July 13, 2010
After a particulary stormy night in El Paso, I came home feeling like a zombie after a midnight shift, stepped out of my truck and discovered the ugliest, biggest, nastiest bug I have ever seen. That woke me up. It was making it’s way towards my open garage so I bumped it with my boot to redirect it and it got into a defensive/offensive stance that spooked me pretty bad. I just had to take a picture of it. My wife said it was a vinageroon and likes to eat scorpions. She said it was harmless and I should let it stay in the front yard to kill the scorpions. She didn’t see how big this thing was! It was a full 6 inches from whip to front legs, 4 inches just the body alone. As you can see from the photo, I made it quite mad.
I’m not one to kill anything on purpose, so I scooped it up with a shovel and deposited over our back wall into the desert. If you have never seen one in person, let me tell you, that is not an insect, spider, or arachnid. It is more like a lobster!
El Paso, Texas
Thanks for writing to us about your personal account of a harrowing encounter with a harmless Vinegaroon. Your wife is a wise person. Your photo is a nice documentation of the defensive pose this formidable hunter.