This scorpion is known as the Striped Bark
Scorpion. The species name means "striped".
North America (Mexico, USA (Arkansas, Colorado, Illinois,
Louisiana, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma,
Texas)). This is the most common scorpion in the USA.
In natural habitats, this species is found in areas with
a lot of cracks and crevices (rocky areas, forests and
quite often in human buildings), where it will hide. This
is a higly adaptive species, which tolerates different
climatic conditions. C. vittatus is an active
forager that does not burrow. It is distinctly associated
with dead vegetation, fallen logs and human dwellings. It
is common for this species to climb trees and walls, and
many times it has been found in the attics of homes. During
periods of hot weather, scorpions may move into living
areas to escape the high temperatures in attics. This
species has a high density in some areas. C. vittatus has
to endure low tempertaures in some areas. A study has
shown that it survives sub-zero temperatures by
tolerating limited freezing of body tissue.
This scorpion can inflict very a painful sting,
but it is not considered as potent as some of its
relatives. It probably has a minor medical significance
for healthy humans.
Brown, C. A. and Formanowicz, D. R. Jr. (1995) Variation
in reproductive investment among and within populations
of the scorpion Centruroides vittatus. Oecologia,
vol.103(2), p. 140-147.
Shelley, R. M. & W. D. Sissom (1995). Distributions
of the scorpions Centruroides vittatus (Say) and Centruroides
hentzi (Banks) in the United States and Mexico
(Scorpiones, Buthidae). Journal of Arachnology, vol. 23,
Sissom, W. D. and R. M. Shelley (1995).
Report on a rare developmental anomaly in the scorpion, Centruroides
vittatus (Buthidae). J. Arachnol., vol. 23, pp.
Shelley, R.M. 1994. Introductions of the scorpions Centruroides
vittatus (Say) and C. hentzi (Banks) into
North Carolina, with records of the indigenous scorpion, Vaejovis
carolinianus (Beauvois) (Scorpionida: Buthidae,
Vaejovidae). Brimleyana vol. 21, pp. 45-55.
Formanowicz, D. R., Jr., & Shaffer, L. R. (1993).
Reproductive investment in the scorpion Centruroides
vittatus. Oecologia, vol. 94, pp. 368-372.
Whitemore, D. H. et al. (1985a). Scorpion Cold Hardiness.
Physiological Zoology, vol. 58. pp. 526-537.
Whitemore, D. H. et al. (1985b). Freeze tolerance of the
scorpion Centruroides vittatus. Cryo-Letters,
vol. 6(6). pp. 402-405.
On the Internet:
Stockwell on Centruroides vittatus (with picture
of different color forms).
Striped Scorpion by Michele Schlesinger
Jason Schaefer on Centruroides vittatus.
few pictures on the Internet.
This species are known to have several color variations.
The most common color variant of this species has the
characteristic dark interocular triangle with posterior "shapes" on the carapace
(Other Centruriodes from Mexico have stripes on the carapace, no
triangle or "Shapes")
and a pair of dark, longitudinal stripes on the mesosoma
(see the photos above). The body color is usually
yellowish brown. See Scott Stockwells web page for more
information about the other color forms. Males have a
longer cauda than females, and the shape of the telson
differ between the sexes. A distinct, yet small subaculear tubercle is found
on the telson. This species can reach up to 7
cm in lenght.
This species is found in some pet collections, both in
US and Europe, and are known be be easy to keep in
captivity. Captive breeding have been reported.
Littersize for this species is reported to be 13-47
No current reserach on the species is known.
Centruroides vittatus photos
(left: male, right: female) by Jan Ove Rein (C)
Part of the information in this file was supplied by Kari McWest.