By Njudungmatilda (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Tailless Whip Scorpion

Okay, here’s the scoop. These things are horrific the first time, at least it was for me. I had NO idea such a thing existed and killed the first few I ever found. However now, I can say that I regret doing that because as unsightful as they are, they eat cockroaches. If you’re finding these inside your home it’s likely you have cockroaches (and other critters) you don’t know about.

This is the tailless whip scorpion which is neither an actual spider nor scorpion. They are a common nocturnal critter around here and frequently found inside homes as they follow “food”. These creatures walk sideways on six legs, are excellent climbers and are fast as lightening. Despite their appearance, they lack a proper stinger that you would associate with scorpions, although they do have large, thick pinchers they use on their prey.

They are non-venomous, but can spray an acidic enzyme. They prefer larger insects but will occasionally consume tiny vertebrates such as lizards, frogs and crustaceans. For a size comparison, the body of an adult will fit in the palm of your hand (their feelers will hang over). They’re not small and they’re not pretty, but they are a good indicator of what thrives around your home at night. If you never see them, count your blessings.