Wild Things with Dominic Monaghan

Black hairy thick-tailed scorpion, Namibia

This scorpion is widespread in Namibia, and it differs from other members of its genus because it is diurnal: it can be up at night or during the day.

Black hairy thick-tailed scorpion, Namibia

The black hairy thick-tailed scorpion (Parabuthus villosus) is large, about 140 mm in length and is black in colour.

This scorpion is widespread in Namibia, and it differs from other members of its genus because it is diurnal: it can be up at night or during the day. This scorpion prefers dry, rocky habitats, and is usually found in areas of the Namib and Kalahari deserts where the sand dunes and rocky hills come together.

In southern Africa, 20 species of Parabuthus are distributed throughout the sub region, predominantly diverse in the arid and semi-arid regions. These large scorpions are the most venomous scorpions in southern Africa.

There are four different colour categories for the Parabuthus villosus, but the ones in Northern Namibia are black with black or dark brown legs. In central and southern Namibia, they are black with yellow legs. In the southwest they are black as well.

The Parabuthus villosus is one of the largest buthid scorpions known. Unlike other types of scorpion, this one hunts during the day. Usually they prefer the cool, overcast, or twilight part of the day – but they have been known to hunt in the hottest part of the day as well. P. villosus has been known to catch and eat beetles during the day.

Their tails are extremely thick, strong with keels. Their pincers are smooth and weak. Many species are able to produce large amounts of venom from their large venom glands, especially the transvaalicus and villosus.

The main predators of scorpions are carnivorous marsupials, rodents, lizards, nocturnal birds, centipedes and other scorpions. A major predator for scorpions in Namibia are meerkats.

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  • Becky bell

    1 year ago

    Becky bell

    I find what you do for a living quite amazing you scare me sometimes by picking up and playing with the wild things that truly can kill you thank you for sharing what you know to the world but as history shows us be cautious and always be on guard because your life is always at risk by the ones you admire.

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