Southern Devil Scorpion (Vaejovis carolinianus)

southern devil scorpion - 2016-03-19 20.29.50 - Tunica Hills WMA, LA

On an overnight naturalist class with the Louisiana Master Naturalist of Greater Baton Rouge to Tunica Hills Wildlife Management Area in West Feliciana Parish, Louisiana we were shining for spiders when someone overturned a log and found a scorpion.   It was tiny, just a little larger than my fingernail and mostly brown.  Eight legs and that classic tail with the stinger identified it as a scorpion.  I had no idea that scorpions even existed east of the Mississippi River so we took plenty of photos and a quick internet search later, we had an answer; Southern Devil Scorpion.

Southern Devil Scorpions are one of only two scorpions naturally found in Louisiana with the other being the Striped Bark Scorpion (Centruroides vittatus).  They’re primarily nocturnal and found in leaf litter and under logs.  Their sting is said to be painful but not deadly.  I couldn’t quite nail down a range on this species, so I created a range map based on the reference below.

southern devil scorpion range mapReferences:
Southern Devil Scorpion on insectidentification.org