If you are looking for a unique, peculiar pet to have – Tailless Whip Scorpion is exactly that.
It belongs to Amblypygi order and is in fact not a scorpion. So far there are 155 specifics species of this order found. Tailless Whip Scorpions are actually arachnids, related more closely to spiders rather than scorpions. They are a mix of spiders, scorpions, and even crabs, all in one. Do not confuse them with Thelyphonida order, which also goes under the same name, but is, in fact, different from each other.
With all that in mind, we could actually call them Tailless Whip Spiders, rather than Whip Scorpions.
If all of that wasn’t enough to entice your curiosity, perhaps some of its characteristics will. Tailless Whip Scorpions come from tropical/subtropical environments, and they can be found worldwide – America, Africa, Asia. They are very much unique looking with their small bodies but enormous legs, and their behavior is very special, given that they’re a combination of spiders, scorpions, and crabs, exhibiting their specific characteristics.
Tailless Whip Scorpion Lifespan & Size
With its different appearance, Tailless Whip Scorpion is usually very small in body size, growing only up to 2 inches. However, their leg span can be as long as 20 inches in size, which makes them very big. Their life spans anywhere between 5 – 15 years, with females living slightly longer than males.
They require several molts before they reach their full size, developing into adults.
Tailless Whip Scorpion Facts & Characteristic
To start off the list of characteristics, we have to talk about the unique appearance of Tailless Whip Scorpion. With their small bodies and large legs, they can actually seem quite intimidating on a first look. But in fact, they are relatively harmless and calm-tempered. They are often darker in color, exhibiting black, grey & brown combinations. During their molting period, they turn entirely white or green, making them very attractive to look at.
Tailless Whip Scorpion has 8 legs in total, 6 of which are used for walking. The other two legs on the front are used as antennas to “feel” the surroundings and to better understand what’s going on in their environment. These legs are very reminiscent of whips, hence the name. Additionally, they do not have a tail attached to their body which makes them different from actual scorpions, also adding up to their name – Tailless Whip Scorpion.
You might be wondering what is their connection to crabs…?
Their movement is what connects them; they move sideways with 6 of their legs – similar to crabs.
Tailless Whip Scorpion is a beginner friendly pet that doesn’t require a lot of special care and attention. Their behavior is somewhat docile, as they are harmless to humans. Feel free to give this very unique spider a chance to be a part of your community. One thing to note is that their bodies are quite fragile, so keep that in mind when taking care of one. Also, their fragility is increased during molting periods, and you must be certain that there are no alive insects in the tank. Otherwise, they might hurt, even kill your spider during its molt.
All Amblypygi species are nocturnal, so they are mostly active during the night. During the day, they will usually hide under some cover, waiting for night time before they take off to hunt down some prey.
Handling & Bite
Due to their body composition, Tailless Whip Scorpions are relatively fragile so handling them may lead to serious injuries. Otherwise, feel free to handle them as you please, just make sure to do so in a slow & calm manner.
Tailless Whip Scorpion does not have a venomous bite.
This spider does not use venom to kill its prey. Instead, it uses pedipals similar to pincers to grab their prey and slowly eat it. Your pet will probably not bite you. However, the “sting” from pincers can be somewhat painful so it’s best to avoid agitating your Tailless Whip Scorpion.
Tailless Whip Scorpions are carnivores, so they require meaty foods to thrive. Feeding them is somewhat similar to other arachnid species, after all – they are also called Tailless Whip Spiders.
You should feed them mainly insects that are gut-fed with vegetables.
Here are some food choices for your tailless whip:
- Meal Worms
- Wax Worms
They do not require a lot of food due to their small body size. Ideally, you want to feed them two to three times per week, with medium to large sized meals. Always make sure their meals are during night time, as they are nocturnal species. The water dish is not necessary, although it could be useful to keep the humidity levels as necessary.
Tailless Whip Scorpion Care
Taking care of your Tailless Whip Scorpion is a fairly easy task, even if you are a beginner. There are only a couple of things you should be aware of before you decide to host your new pet in your home.
One of these things was already mentioned – Tailless Whip Scorpions are nocturnal species, so most of their activity will be during the night. This also means that they require darker terrariums with less light coming in.
Tank / Habitat
When it comes to their housing, you should follow these general guidelines:
- Tank Size: roughly 10 gallons
- Temperatures of 75 – 80 °F
- Humidity 75% and above
- Substrate: Peat moss, Potting Soil, Coconut Fiber – 2 inch of depth is enough
- Decor: It’s a good idea to provide places to hide, as well as to make terrarium darker
- Air Ventilation is also suggested
This setting work just fine, but you can also experiment with what you like. Just make sure to keep the temperature levels close to that of tropical environments, humidity should always be in the upper levels, and air ventilation is often necessary. Tailless Whip Scorpions can be quite large, so you should give them enough space to move around comfortably. Decorations are nice as they provide shelter so your pet can feel safe, especially during molting periods, this also appeases to their predatory nature so your pet can hunt the prey straight out of its cover.
Tailless Whip Scorpion Breeding
Breeding your Tailless Whip Scorpion is definitely possible, and you don’t have to be an expert to do so.
The only requirement is to have two adults that are ready to mate. Young Whip Scorpions are not capable of breeding, so make sure you wait for several molting seasons to pass before you attempt to breed them. After a certain amount of successful molts, you will notice an extension in your pet’s pedipals as it will be somewhat different looking – this is often a sign of maturity and readiness to breed.
Tailless Whip Scorpion breeding process is closer to scorpions, rather than spiders.
Once you introduce your male & female together, they will signal one another by dancing and tapping each other’s bodies with their whips. Once this happens, the breeding process begins. Unlike spiders, scorpions don’t breed with male depositing his seed inside of a female. Instead, the male scorpion will deposit his spermatophores on the ground that contain his sperm & will then guide the female to pick them up. Female picks up the sperm that will eventually lead to eggs being carried within her abdomen.
Eventually, the eggs will hatch, and mother spider will carry slings on her back until they molt for the very first time. For best results, you should try to keep humidity levels high during the reproduction period.