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Name: Heterometrus has Greek roots meaning other, unlike and mother. This is probably from a long standing but unsubstantiated theory that members of this genus can reproduce parthenogenetically. This claim has not been able to be proven in any controlled setting, but they can hold on to sperm for upwards of a year after mating, waiting for the prime time to have their young.
Recomended enclosure size: Babies can quite easily be kept in something the size of a 16 oz cup for quite a few molts, it is in fact recommended to do so as scorpions aren’t always the best hunters and keeping them in a space that allows them to burrow but does not allow prey items a lot of room to get away helps ensure that they will be able to eat. Provide babies with at least 2” of substrate so that they can create their burrows. As adults a single scorpion is content in an enclosure around the size of a 5 gallon aquarium, if you wish to house multiple scorpions in one enclosure though, opt for something with a similar floor dimension to a 20L and provide ample hides, ground cover and at least 5”-6” of substrate for your scorpion(s) to burrow into.
Temperature: 70-80F, heating generally isn’t a concern with this species, however if in a particularly drafty room during the colder months you may opt to put a heat mat on the side of the enclosure to help supplement some heat. We do not recommend putting this underneath the enclosure, arachnids are largely instinct driven creatures that often burrow to avoid heat, and can accidentally die of heat stress if given heat from the bottom.
Humidity: 75%-80%, this can be accomplished by keeping the substrate uniformly lightly moistened, this can be easily achieved by starting out with moist substrate and lightly misting the enclosure any time the top layer of substrate is observed to be dry.
Size: They can grow to an excess of 5” in length, sometimes as long as 6”. These are young scorpions, and will measure around 2"-2.5" in length.
Age: These scorpions can easily live a decade, with no real difference in lifespan between males and females. Some reports of the species living for up to 20 years have been made.
Feeding: Crickets work well as feeders for scorpions. Simply make sure that those you supply them with an appropriate size. Generally crickets being fed to scorpions should be about the length of the scorpion’s “head”, or about the length from the scorpion's eyes to the end of its mouthparts as seen from above. ¼” crickets work for rather young scorpions but adult emperor or Asian forest scorpions should be given 1” crickets. Make sure to remove from your tank any cricket carcasses that may have been left behind by your scorpions. Because they can be messy eaters, we highly advise seeding your substrate with springtails to help with enclosure maintenance.
Sexing: Place each scorpion into a container with a clear bottom individually and use bunched up cloth laid over them to press them lightly against the bottom. This should give you enough of a view of their respective genitalia to make sex determinations. Images of how to distinguish male from female scorpions are readily available online.
Color/Pattern: Asian Forest Scorpions are large, all black, and have a mottled texture to their claws. They glow a greenish/bluish color under ultraviolet light.
Social behavior: While cannibalism does occur in this species, it is rare and it is possible to successfully keep several H petersii together.
Breeding: You will want to upgrade your pair of scorpions to a larger terrarium. At minimum they should be placed in a 20 gallon tank. From this point continue to care for your scorpions as normal. If your scorpions like each other they will eventually mate and you will soon find your female noticeably swollen with young. At this point you should separate the male back to his own terrarium as a mother scorpion becomes highly defensive. For this reason also you should minimize any disturbances that must be made to the terrarium for maintenance purposes while she is with young.
She will carry her young around on her back and feed them until their first molt. After this they will depart off on their own and may be fed ¼” crickets (½” may also work if ¼” are not available). From here on you will care for them as you would any other scorpion in relation to their size.
Natural range: Cambodia, Laos, Philippines, Vietnam
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