How To Care For Emperor Scorpions

How To Care For Emperor Scorpions

VideoJug expert Mark Amey's presents a step by step guide to looking after scorpions safely. Learn how to feed them insects and to give them the correct environment to live.

Step 1: Housing and Bedding

Keep your scorpion in a well-ventilated glass or plastic tank with a secure lid. Install a heat mat and a thermostat at the back of the tank to keep the temperature at 25 degrees. Place the thermostat sensor over the heat source. Fit a thermometer to check the temperature. The floor should be covered with a thick layer of substrate such as cocoa fibre which should be kept moist. The tank should measure about 30 centimetres by 20 by 10. There should be plenty of obstacles such as bark and rocks for your scorpion to climb, burrow and hide in. Use silica gel or soak cotton wool in bottled water and place it in a small dish for the scorpion to drink from. Humidity should be 60-70% which can be checked with a hydrometer. Scorpions don't like bright lights so keep the tank out of direct sunlight and away from radiators and draughts. It is best not to keep more than one in the same tank, as there is a risk that the weakest may be eaten.

Step 2: Handling

It is not advisable to handle your scorpion as it can sting and bite. When it needs to be moved, coax it into a ventilated container that can be closed afterwards, or use tongs to gently pick it up just below the sting.

Step 3: Diet

Feed your scorpion live crickets, locusts and mealworms. The insects themselves should be fed beforehand with a nutrient rich mixture available from pet shops. Use tongs and feed your scorpion one insect at a time. It may eat 2 or 3 at a time, or refuse altogether. Scorpions don't eat every day and sometimes fast for a week or more. Adult scorpions moult once or twice a year and will refuse food before and after moulting. They drink a lot of water so make sure it is available every day.

Step 4: Exercise and Play

Scorpions will get any exercise they need from within their enclosure. Avoid handling your scorpion as it may sting or bite.

Step 5: Cleaning

Scorpions don't make much mess, but food remains should be removed. Change the substrate and clean and disinfect the tank every 3 or 4 months using an arachnid friendly disinfectant.

Step 6: Health

Your scorpion should have few health problems if kept in the right conditions. If it is overheated it will become very active, may appear to sting itself and roll over on it's back. It will not eat if it is too cold. It is important not to keep live insects in the tank if they are not being eaten as your scorpion may be bitten by its prey.