Subject: Devil Scorpion ?
Location: Gwinnett County, Lilburn, Georgia
September 27, 2013 12:40 pm
I found this guy while removing some old Railroad Ties from a dilapidated flower bed. When I lifted the RR Tie, he was just sitting there with discarded carcasses strewn about – as if I had uncovered his Evil Lair. I thought he was dead at first…. just laying there flat as a potato chip. However, as I was trying to scrape him into my bug-examining jar, he sprang to life and ran over my hand and under my shoe. As my vision narrowed and I started seeing stars, all I could think was he was probably scampering around my shoe and about to climb the back of my leg. As I lifted my foot, he just laid there, doing his ”potato chip” routine again. Not to be fooled again, I opted to scoop him ( and everything around him) up into the jar. While I was trying to take his picture, he again sprang to life and went sky-diving off my patio table onto my leg…..I’ve never been so thankful not to be wearing shorts. With some deft maneuvering I was ab le to get him back on the table without getting stung, pinched, or fouling my pants. It is absolutely amazing how fast this critter can move. He’s only about 1 inch long…..sorry I don’t have anything in the picture for size comparison. He looked like he was getting cranky ( I suspect he was born that way) so I wrapped up the photo shoot and released him in the most remote section of my back yard ….. despite threats and protests from my mother and sister. I’ve lived in Georgia pretty much all my life and this is only the 3 scorpion I’ve ever found here. According to the WWW there are only two species of scorpion native to Georgia, and since I didn’t see any stripes on my guy, and I live about 25 miles north of Atlanta, I can only conclude that I have the ”Devil” scorpion gallivanting around my back yard. I didn’t really find any Scorpions on your website, despite browsing for more than an hour ….. so I 217;m not sure if maybe you don’t consider them bugs or maybe they’re not very common. I’ve flipped over a ton of stones and boards in my 45+ years on this earth and this is only the 3rd one I’ve ever seen. So, I tend to think that they are pretty good at hiding, or they are at least relatively scarce … at least here in Georgia.
Signature: Scorpion Landlord
Hi Scorpion Landlord,
We found your letter to by highly entertaining and we commend you on the dedication to getting a photo of this wily Scorpion. Dave’s Garden identifies Vaejovis carolinianus as the Southern Devil Scorpion, yet BugGuide does not recognize that name, preferring instead the Southern Unstriped Scorpion. We cannot understand why you couldn’t locate any Scorpions on our site and we do consider them to be bugs which we loosely define as “things that crawl.” We have a Scorpion and Whipscorpion category in the link list on the left side of our homepage, and the search engine on our site should also have produced postings from our archive. We are tagging you with the Bug Humanitarian award for defying your mother and sister.
I finally found the Scorpion section of your website, after I submitted the email. I have a terrible tendency to totally miss something that’s staring me right in the face…..sometimes the harder I look for something the less likely I am to find it.
Thanks for taking the time to check out my new backyard buddy. While I hope he lives a normal Scorpion life in my backyard habitat, I’m not looking forward to crossing his path again.