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Check out this video from the new virtual Museum of Science, MOSatHome! Discover Asian Forest Scorpions, nocturnal creatures that live in the tropical rainforests of Southeast Asia on the forest floor. Unlike humans, scorpions are able to see ultraviolet light and fluoresce under it, which makes them look like they are glowing under a black light. All scorpions fluoresce under UV light due to the hyaline layer in their exoskeleton.
While scientists don't know exactly why scorpions have this adaptation, a few of the leading theories are it protects them from sunlight, it helps scorpions find their prey or it confuses their prey.
Species: Asian Forest Scorpion (Heterometrus spp.)
Native Habitat: Located in the tropical rainforest of Southeast Asia, these scorpions spend their time on the forest floor, beneath logs and debris and sometimes burrowing into the soil.
Diet: In the wild, they eat insects and spiders. Here at the Museum, our scorpions get crickets and cockroaches.
Life Expectancy: 7 – 8 years
- Asian forest scorpions don't see very well, so they rely on touch. Stiff hairs on their pincers and pectines are used to sense their environment.
-There are close to 2,000 species of scorpions in the world. All have venom, but only about 25 species are deadly to humans.
-Asian forest scorpions have low venom toxicity but are more aggressive than some other species of scorpions.
-Our Asian forest scorpions had seven babies last year.
-All scorpions fluoresce under ultraviolet light due to the hyaline layer, a very thin but super touch coating on part of the scorpion's exoskeleton called a cuticle.