You’d be surprised to learn these about scorpions!

• We’ve all heard and likely believe that all scorpions are venomous. While this is true, of the more than 1,700 known species, less than three dozen have venom strong enough to make a human ill or to kill them.

• There are scorpions everywhere—except Antarctica!

• Certain kinds of scorpions can survive a year without food or water. If there’s a scarcity of resources, they can survive on one insect a year then hibernate by slowing down their metabolism. They get revived from their “frozen” state with the help of the sun.

• Scorpions subsist on a liquid diet: although they prey on other creatures, they actually inject these with their venom that causes the insides to turn liquid – which the scorpion then sucks out.

• Scorpions can survive a nuclear detonation!


Scorpions have long fascinated humans. For thousands of years, it has been utilized as symbol in various cultures and religions and has also been used in other ways.

• Perhaps the most famous use of the scorpion in culture is the existence of Scorpio in astrology. It’s the zodiac sign of those born on and between October 23 and November 21.

• The ancient Egyptians believed scorpions were gods that protected royalty.

• Scorpions feature in Muslim folklore, particularly in North Africa and South Asia. Although they are considered representations of evil, they are also seen as protectors against other evil forces. As such, they often appear in Islamic art in the given regions, including in things such as woven carpets.

• Scorpions are considered symbolic of a variety of things, including: death, sex, treachery, protection, isolation, among others.

Scorpions are considered a delicacy in China. Recipes include scorpions cooked kebab-style on sticks.

This story appeared in Animal Scene’s May 2016 issue.