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Poisonous animals
Cnidarians (Jellyfish, Corals and Anemones)
Venomous fish
Hymenopterans (Bees, Wasps and Ants)
Sea snakes
Terrestrial snakes
Miscellaneous animals

Biological features of scorpions


Description of the most important culprits:


General behaviour
Defensive behaviour
Factors relevant to envenoming

Leiurus sp.



Live under flat stones, but

they sometimes also enter houses.

In Israel they avoid the coastal plains, as well as areas with sand dunes or heavy soil. Usually found in rocky desert areas, or in loosely built stone walls.

In North Africa also found in mountainous areas, but not higher than 900 m above sea level.

Delicate pincers, tail relatively thin. Colouring from light yellow to orange-brown. The 5th tail segment may be darker. Length up to more than 9 cm.

Defense posture in typical scorpion manner: Tail bent over the body, with the sting acting over the forebody in a foreward direction.

Responsible for many accidents in the distribution area.

Accidents most commonly occur in rural areas, but to a smaller extent also in urban regions. In the Negev desert, the Bedouins represent the largest risk group.


Androctonus sp.



They usually live under large stones, also close to settlements, and enters houses.

Deserts and semi-deserts. Stony or sandy grounds; also in sand dunes. A. hoggarensis up to 2,000 m above sea level  in mountainous regions. They generally avoid damp coastal areas.


Also often found under cactus hedges, which are planted in urban areas to mark boundaries between dwellings

A. australis up to 10 cm, yellow to cream color. Other species also in various shades of brown from light brown, reddish, greenish or dark brown to black.

Pincers slender, but bulbous at the base, metasoma (tail) conspicuously fat. Characteristic are the marked keels, which are located on the top of the individual tail segments.

Tail bent over the body, with the sting acting over the forebody in a foreward direction. Immediately willing to sting repeatedly when threatened.

Most stings from July to September.

Stings most often in the foot, while walking around barefoot during the night, or after putting shoes on carelessly. Stings also in the hand when lifting or turning over stones. Stings less frequently inside the home, but much more commonly outside around the home. However, in Jordan it is not uncommon for people to be stung in outside toilets.



Centruroides sp.


They are known to hide themselves outside houses in woodpiles or under planks of wood or rubbish. They also often enter houses, where at night they hunt prey on the walls and ceilings and during the day hides themselves wherever they can find dark, narrow niches.

Live under loose bark or in crevices in trees or fence posts. They do not burrow into the ground as many other scorpions do. Closely associated with the living areas of humans in many regions in which they are found.

Slender pincers and narrow tail. Body length up to 10 cm and more.

Colouring variable, from light shades of yellow or brown to red-brown and dark-brown. Sometimes dorsal body markings in the form of two dark longitudinal stripes.

Tail bent over the body, with the sting acting over the forebody in a foreward direction. Stings immediately when threatened.


Most accidents occur in living quarters in regional areas, but some species also cause large numbers of stings in various cities.


Tityus sp.



Live under stones, dead wood, loose bark or along the banks of rivers. Some species enter houses.

T. bahiensis and T. serrulatus in particular commonly live in dark crevices in and around human habitations. They are also often found in large numbers in older areas of cities.

Preferred habitats of T. trinitatis in Trinidad are sugar cane and coconut plantations (does not enter houses).

Slender pincers. Body length of T. bahiensis, T. serrulatus, T. stigmurus and T. trivittatus up to around 7 cm, T. trinitatis up to around 9 cm.

Colouring: T. serrulatus yellowish to dark brown, legs and tail in lighter shades of yellow. T. bahiensis uniformly brown, tail and legs reddish-brown. T. trinitatis yellow-brown to dark brown, legs and pedipalps reddish and yellow.

Tail bent over the body, with the sting acting over the forebody in a foreward direction.

Stings by T. bahiensis and T. serrulatus often in and around human habitations.