Parabuthus granulatus
Ehrenberg, 1831




Common names:
Granulated Thick-Tailed Scorpion

Africa (Angola, Botswana, Namibia, South-Africa, Zimbabwe).

One of the larger species of Parabuthus, P. granulatus is found mainly in dry habitats (receiving less than 600 mm of rain per year) in South Africa and Namibia. It digs a shallow burrow at the base of shrubs in sandy to consolidated sandy soils, but is also known to dig a shallow scrape under rocks in soil of widely variable hardness and texture. It may also be found in and around human dwellings in these areas.

Parabuthus granulatus is the most medically important venomous scorpion in South Africa, with potentially life-threatening venom (Newlands, 1974; Müller, 1992). In one study, 42 serious cases was reported with 4 fatal outcomes. All fatal outcomes were children, which had not recceived antivenom (made from P. traansvalicus venom). The use of antivenom for serious cases is reccomended.

A study (ses internet link below) reports of a LD50 value of 1.56 mg/kg for this species (other Parabuthus species in South Africa had LD 50 values in excess of 20 mg/kg.

This species can not squirt venom.

Both studies conclude that P. granulatus is the most important venomous scorpion in South Africa.

Selected litterature:
Newlands, G. (1974). The venom-squirting ability of Parabuthus scorpions (Arachnida:Buthidae). South African Journal of Medical Sciences 39: 175-178.
Lamoral, B. H. (1979). The scorpions of Namibia (Arachnida: Scorpionida). Ann. Natal Mus., 23(3), 497-784.
Müller, G. J. (1992). Scorpionism in South Africa. South African Medical Journal, 83: 405-411.

On the Internet:
Medical importance of Parabuths granulatus confirmed by LD50 studies.
Gifttier Informationsdienst on Parabuthus spp.

This species is probably found in some pet collections. This species should only be kept by researchers or very experienced keepers.

This is one of the larger species of Parabuthus.

Parabuthus granulatus photo by Dave Gaban (C)

Part of the information about this species was supplied by Peter Croeser, South Africa

Jan Ove Rein (C) 2023