All scorpions fluoresce under ultraviolet light. Some sting with venom. Others spook us with their uncanny ability to survive the harshest conditions. Maybe that’s why scorpions are often featured in scary movies and science fiction.

But here’s a real nightmare: a scorpion infestation in your home or yard.

scorpion pest control
Bark scorpion

Summertime is peak season for scorpion pest control, according to Ricardo Plasencia, an entomologist and technical director for the West Region at HomeTeam Pest Defense. Scorpions tend to be inactive when temperatures are cool, and they’re more likely to be out and about and looking for new habitats when the weather is warm.

Scorpion Synopsis

Scorpions are arthropods, which are members of the class Arachnida and closely related to spiders, mites and ticks. Scorpions can survive in inhospitable environments, and have a lifespan of about three years. These nocturnal predators feed on crickets and spiders – sometimes mice or even other scorpions. They can survive as long as a year having had as little as a single meal of one insect. Researchers have frozen scorpions, thawed them in the sun, and watched them walk away.

There are about 90 different kinds of scorpions in the U.S., but three species tend to turn up as pests in homes and yards:

  • Arizona hairy scorpion: The largest scorpion in the U.S., typically 5 to 7 inches at maturity, is found in Southern California and Arizona.
  • Striped-tail scorpion: Inhabitants of hotter areas of the country, mostly southern New Mexico, these critters are less active when temperatures dip below 70 degrees.
  • Bark scorpion: Mainly found in Texas, Arizona, Nevada and California, this creepy-crawly has a poisonous bite. “Bark scorpions are also the most likely to turn up in homes and yards, because they are good climbers,” Ric said. “They can climb brick walls and smooth surfaces, like stucco, something most other scorpions can’t do.”

Scorpions are typically not aggressive and won’t bite unless disturbed or cornered. There have been instances where people have unintentionally disturbed a scorpion that burrowed into a closet or under folded linens, triggering a bite.

Bites from the types of scorpions found in the U.S. are rarely fatal. “The bark scorpion’s bite is a little more severe than a wasp or a bee sting, and is most likely to be fatal only to a young or elderly person, or someone who has an allergic reaction,” Ric said.

Scorpion Pest Control

Scorpions tend to turn up in older neighborhoods that are lush with vegetation, where they can find places to hide. “Newer developments tend to drive scorpions out, but once vegetation returns, you may have more of a problem,” Ric said.

If you spot a scorpion in your home or yard, check the area for potential scorpion habitats or feed

remove scorpion from home
Scorpions like to hide in palm trees and rock formations.

sources. Scorpions love to climb and hide inside palm trees. Decorative boulders, which may offer moisture and shelter, are another attraction. Integrative pest management is one of the best ways to help combat a scorpion infestation, as scorpions are difficult to control with insecticides alone.

“The first line of defense is to cut off their food sources,” Ric said. “Also, remove potential hiding places. Scorpions like moisture and dark, enclosed spaces. Check areas that might harbor moisture – around pool equipment, piles of wood or lumber, or under rocks or boulders. Even if it hasn’t rained for a month, you might find some moisture in those areas.”

Here are Ric’s scorpion pest control prevention tips.

  • Keep your landscape trimmed. Don’t allow piles of leaves, plants or debris to accumulate in areas close to your home. Without a place nearby to harbor and hide, scorpions are not likely to invade.
  • Seal entry points. Remember that scorpions are nocturnal; they may come out at night, looking for places to hide. Secure door thresholds, windows, cracks or crevices, or anything that might give them an opportunity to slip in.
  • Pay extra attention after weather events. Anything that might disrupt scorpions’ natural habitats may send them into your home or yard. If you’ve had a severe drought, they may look for new moisture-laden habitats. Similarly, flooding in the area might drive them to look for new shelter.

 

For more information on scorpion prevention, check out our video. If you have a scorpion infestation or need to remove a scorpion from your home, you may need expert assistance. HomeTeam professionals can provide the safest, most effective methods of scorpion pest control – as well as recommendations for a preventive pest control plan. Contact us today!

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