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Insects and other arthropods

Scorpions

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Description

Scorpions have eight legs and a pair of front appendages called pedipalps. These pedipalps have claws for catching their prey. Scorpions have long tails with a telson at the end, a stinger that serves as an organ of defence.

On their bellies, scorpions have comb-like appendages that are used as sensory organs. They can have up to 12 eyes, but their eyes are not very well developed.

Depending on species, they range in length from one to 20 cm.

Life cycle

Scorpions have a complex courtship ritual known as a mating dance. Females are viviparous, meaning they do not lay eggs – scorpions are born fully formed. At the beginning of their lives, the mother carries them on her back.

Scorpions moult several times (often between six and nine times) to grow and reach sexual maturity. They usually reach adulthood in a year or two, but some species do not reach adulthood for several years. They can live between two and 25 years in captivity but more frequently, live for three to five years.

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