While most people don’t like thinking about the scorpions living out in the desert, it’s better to know what’s out there before you encounter one. Since scorpions live underground, you’re more likely to stumble across them after heavy rainstorms because their burrows will flood. But what scorpions live in Utah, and which ones do you need to be extra wary around?

We broke down everything that you need to know here!scorpion divider

The 3 Scorpions Found in Utah

1. Arizona Bark Scorpion

female Arizona bark scorpion
Image Credit: Ernie Cooper, Shutterstock
Species:Centruroides sculpturatus
Longevity:5 to 7 years
Good to own as a pet?:No
Legal to own?:Yes
Adult size:2.5 inches
Diet:Beetles, spiders, crickets, cockroaches, other insects, and scorpions

If you’re looking for the most poisonous scorpion found in the United States, this is it. The Arizona bark scorpion might not look like much, but its sting can carry a punch. It’s not enough to kill most healthy adults, but it can kill children or elderly individuals. Because of this scorpion’s extremely aggressive nature and high levels of venom, we don’t recommend trying to keep one as a pet.

In the wild, these critters can live anywhere from 5 to 7 years and eats other insects. Just know that if you run into one in the wild, they’re extremely territorial and don’t need a reason to attack you.

2. Giant Desert Hairy Scorpion

Desert hairy scorpion (Hadrurus arizonensis)
Image Credit: IrinaK, Shutterstock
Species:Hadrurus arizonensis
Longevity:10 to 20 years
Good to own as a pet?:Yes
Legal to own?:Yes
Adult size:7 inches
Diet:Lizards, small mammals, other scorpions, and insects

Utah is home to the largest scorpion in the United States: the giant desert hairy scorpion. These massive invertebrates can reach 7 inches in size and have an impressive lifespan of up to 20 years.

But while their size certainly makes it painful to get stung, they’re quite harmless to humans. They don’t carry much venom, so if you do get stung, all that you typically experience is localized swelling. While the giant desert hairy scorpion isn’t as aggressive as the Arizona bark scorpion, they’re not exactly docile either.

But if you want a larger scorpion as a pet, their lifespan and lower venom levels make them a great choice.

3. Black Hairy Scorpion

Black-Back Scorpion - Hadrurus spadix
Image Credit: Randy Bjorklund, Shutterstock
Species:Hadrurus spadix
Longevity:6 years
Good to own as a pet?:Yes
Legal to own?:Yes
Adult size:5 inches
Diet:Large insects, spiders, and small vertebrates

The black hairy scorpion is a close relative to the desert giant hairy scorpion, and as such, they are extremely similar in many ways. While they don’t get quite as large, a 5-inch scorpion isn’t exactly small either. They do have a shorter lifespan, only averaging about 6 years in the wild. They are aggressive if they feel like you’re in their area, but they aren’t as aggressive as the bark scorpion.

While they are venomous, it’s not at a level that it’s dangerous to humans. If you want to keep one as a pet, you certainly can, but they won’t live as long as a giant desert hairy scorpion.

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The 5 Scorpion Infestation Prevention/Removal Tips

If you’re living out in Utah, the last thing that you want is a scorpion plague descending on your home. While that sounds a bit dramatic, if you’re not careful, you can make your home and yard the perfect nesting spot for scorpions.

Here, we highlighted a few of the best things that you can do to make your home and yard less hospitable to these creatures. If you are finding live scorpions on your property, you can try to clear them out using the same methods, but you might need to hire a professional exterminator to remove them. While scorpions aren’t the most deadly to humans, they are aggressive, and you don’t want to deal with them on a consistent basis around your property or in your home.

Arizona Bark Scorpion
Image Credit: IMG_9619B_900x, .Moose.,Flickr, Attribution 2.0 CC

1. Eliminate standing water

While a scorpion can go up to 12 months without food, they can’t last nearly as long without water. In the desert, water is a precious resource, so if you have a constant supply of it around your home, scorpions are going to come flocking to it.

2. Seal your home

You don’t want scorpions in your yard, but you certainly don’t want them coming into your home. Windows and doors are common entryways for scorpions, especially considering that they can climb straight up vertically.

Install door sweeps on all your doors, seal windows, and put screens on all of them to keep the wildlife out.

3. Clear out brush and debris from your yard

Scorpions are nocturnal and look for cool places to hide underneath during the day. Brush and debris make this extremely easy for them, so make your yard less hospitable by removing any clutter.

4. Store firewood at least 30 feet from your home

While you need to store your firewood somewhere, it naturally attracts scorpions. By keeping firewood at least 30 feet from your home, you’re not keeping scorpions away from the wood, but you are keeping them away from your house.

5. Turn off lights at night

Lights don’t attract scorpions, but they do attract crickets and other insects. If you turn your yard into a scorpion feeding ground, it’s only a matter of time before scorpions realize that’s where the buffet is at. Keep scorpions away by keeping their food away.scorpion divider

Treating Scorpion Stings

While you might think that there’s an extensive process to treating a scorpion sting, the truth is that most of the time, they don’t require any advanced medical treatment.

Wash out the stung area with soap and water, and take ibuprofen or another pain management medication as needed. Unless symptoms progress past localized pain and swelling, there’s no need to seek professional medical attention.

However, keep in mind that each person reacts differently, so while one person might not need medical attention, someone else might suffer more serious complications and need to see a doctor.

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While there are plenty of beautiful sights out in Utah, there are also natural predators that you need to be aware of. Scorpions are one of them, but since they’re mostly nocturnal, you shouldn’t have to worry about them too much.

Just be sure to check your shoes each morning, as that can be a cool place for them to burrow down for the day, and it can lead to a rough start for yours!

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Featured Image Credit by Sari ONeal, Shutterstock