Currently viewing the category: "Scorpions, Whipscorpions and Vinegaroons"
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Subject: Tailless Whipscorpion
Location: Mexican border with Guatemala
February 8, 2015 11:08 am
I took this picture on 1/29/2015, identified by the guide as a whip scorpion. But I think it might actually be a tailless whipscorpion, as it has no tail. The picture was taken with a flash inside a Maya ruin at Yaxchilan. I think that the flash has caused shadows so that the legs look “double”. Yaxchilan is on the Mexican side of the Usumacinta River – the border to Guatemala.
From another of your articles, it appears that this creature is from the order Amblypygi , but I was wondering if the species can be identified. “BUG GUIDE” is only for US & Canada, and this creature is Mexican/ Central American.
Signature: Thanks, Bob Williamson

Tailless Whipscorpion

Tailless Whipscorpion

Dear  This Bob,
We don’t generally attempt to identify Tailless Whipscorpions beyond the order, but perhaps one of our readers will write in with more information.
  We did locate a pdf entitled LOS AMBLIPÍGIDOS O TENDARAPOS DE MÉXICO (ARACHNIDA: AMBLYPYGI) by Luis F. de Armas that contains the following information:  “The whip spiders or tailless whipscorpions of Mexico (Arachnida: Amblypygi)  Abstract: The Mexican fauna of whip spiders or tailless whipscorpions contains 20 species belonging to the genera Acantho- phrynus Kraepelin, 1899 (one species), Paraphrynus Moreno, 1940 (11 species) and Phrynus Lamarck, 1801 (8 species) (Phrynidae: Phryninae). Only five (25%) of these species are not Mexican endemics, whereas six Paraphrynus species are troglobites. Paraphrynus and Phrynus have 82% and 50% of endemic species, respectively. The highest specific richness and endemism are concentrated in the southeastern states (Chiapas, Oaxaca and Quintana Roo).”

Hey Daniel:
Thanks for the quick response.  As I look closer at my photo, I can see some banding on the legs, which I previously missed.  I know that the Amblypygi name ending in “Mexico” (which of course I cannot relocate on the web now that I want to again) did not look like this one, mainly because of the light brown and banded legs.  Maybe the flash is hiding that a little.
This was the first time I have seen one and because of the size, it is certainly scary looking.  I was surprised to find out it can neither bite nor sting humans.
Thanks for your help.
Later, This Bob.

Hi again This Bob,
Tailless Whipscorpions do not have venom and they do not have stingers, so they pose no threat to humans.  We thought we once read that a large specimen might bite, but according to BugGuide:  “No venom glands, and do not sting or bite. If disturbed, they scuttle sideways.”

 

 

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Subject: Vaejovis carolinianus Scorpion in Georgia
Location: Columbus, Ga
November 17, 2014 7:03 am
Hi! I was cleaning the bathroom yesterday and found this little guy lounging behind the…uh…facilities. with his tail stretched out he’s almost an inch long. Growing up on the island of Guam, I developed a respect for bugs. This was due mainly to the fact that so many of them wanted to sting, bite, or just generally crawl all over me!
Anyways, with the help of your website I’ve tentatively identified my little houseguest as Vaejovis carolinianus, and am wondering if you concur. He’s living comfortably in a tupperware until I find a suitable home outside for him. We have a little woodpile outside and I plan to release him there once the rain, tornados, and flying mutant undead air-shark attacks stop.
Signature: Geographer

Southern Unstriped Scorpion

Southern Unstriped Scorpion

Dear Geographer,
We concur that this is most likely a Southern Unstriped Scorpion,
Vaejovis carolinianus.  According to BugGuide, it is “‘The only scorpion native to much of the Appalachian states: Kentucky, West Virginia (S), Virginia (SW), North and South Carolina (W), Georgia (North, not coastal or southern, where Centruroides hentzi is found), Alabama (N), Mississippi (NE), Louisiana (tiny, disjunct, area NE of Baton Rouge near MS border), Tennessee (E 2/3).’ – Kari J McWest”

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Subject: Tailless Whip Scorpion
Location: Saint James City, FL
October 27, 2014 10:24 am
Dear Bugman,
Can you tell me the Genus and species of this tailless whip scorpion? I found it underneath a rotting slash pine log, near a salt marsh at Pine Island Preserve at Matlacha Pass, in Saint James City, Florida. I was also wondering if there is a resource describing the distribution and life history of this species. Thanks!
Signature: Conservation Foundation of the Gulf Coast

Tailless Whipscorpion

Tailless Whipscorpion

Dear Conservation Foundation of the Gulf Coast,
According to BugGuide,
Phrynus marginemaculatus “is the only tailless whipscorpion known to occur in Florida.”  We will attempt to find you more information.

Tailless Whipscorpion

Tailless Whipscorpion

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What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What is This Thing?
Location: Michigan
October 4, 2014 8:47 am
Found in Michigan, autumn weather.
Signature: JPF

Tailless Whipscorpion allegedly found in Michigan

HOAX:  Tailless Whipscorpion allegedly found in Michigan

Dear JPF,
We would like additional information.  Did you find this creature?  Was the photograph taken by you?  If the photograph was not taken by you, from where did it come?  We are inquiring because we believe this image is part of a hoax, though it is not entirely impossible that a Tailless Whipscorpion in the order Amblypygi might have been found in Michigan since global travel is now quite routine and this Tailless Whipscorpion might have stowed away in a suitcase.  According to BugGuide, Tailless Whipscorpions have only been reported from Arizona, Texas and Florida in North America, though we imagine they might also be found in other southern states.
  Tailless Whipscorpions are found throughout Central and South America and they are also found in warm, Old World countries.

It’s a hoax.  My neighbor said they found it, but I found the exact same image online associate with a “cave spider”.

Thanks for the confirmation that you have been “Hoaxed” by your neighbor.

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Subject: Tailless whip scorpion eating millipede
Location: South Mexico – Jungle
September 23, 2014 4:46 am
I have been reading (and loving!) your site for many many years and have never had anything to submit because I live in the UK where we do not have an abundance of large and/or exotic insects and where, due to my interest in all things bug, I tend to already be able to identify many critters. In fact I’m a little bit of a “bugwoman” myself, to my family and friends at least, who often save photos to ask me about. I have learnt much of what I know from your amazing site.
However, I recently returned from a wonderful trip to Southern Mexico where I spent much time in the jungle and encountered many wonderful creatures of the six, eight, and more legged variety.
I thought you might enjoy this picture of a tailless whip scorpion eating a millipede for your food chain series? Apologies for the photo quality I took these with my camera phone (the macro lens being shamefully hogged by my less insect-loving companion!).
Signature: Long time avid WTB reader

Tailless Whipscorpion eats Millipede

Tailless Whipscorpion eats Millipede

Dear Long time avid WTB reader,
Thanks for sending us your excellent image of a Tailless Whipscorpion feeding on a Millipede.  The quality of your image is much higher than most images we receive.  Regarding your comment about the fauna of the UK, we are surprised as there are many interesting creatures to be found in your location.  Though it contains some adult content, you may enjoy the film Angels and Insects, an adaptation of an A.S. Byatt Victorian novella.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Scorpion with brood consumes wolf spider
Location: Toledo District , Belize
August 17, 2014 8:32 pm
After looking at your scorpion photos, I thought you might be interested in this image.
Signature: Tanya

Scorpion with Brood devours Spider

Scorpion with Brood devours Wolf Spider

Dear Tanya,
You are our new hero.  These Food Chain images are awesome, but we have some questions.  Please tell us more about this Scorpion that appears to have been feeding indoors.  Was it living inside your home?  Also, the lighting is very different on the two images, with the redder image having more critical focus.  Why are the lighting conditions different?  We found a very similar looking Scorpion on The Flying Kiwi, but it is listed as unidentified.  Since the head of the spider has already been devoured, we didn’t think we would be able to identify your Wolf Spider, but we found an image on Scott Leslie’s site that looks very similar to the Wolf Spider in your images.  Alas, it is not identified beyond the family.  We love that you have supplied images to our site that document the maternal behavior of Scorpions.

Scorpion with Brood devours Wolf Spider

Scorpion with Brood devours Wolf Spider

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination