PASCAL GOETGHELUCK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PASCAL GOETGHELUCK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Emperor scorpion (Pandinus imperator) eating a cricket. This is the largest of the scorpions, reaching a length of over 20 centimetres. It inhabits forests and savannah in tropical central Africa. Its tail is tipped with a ball-like segment called the telson, which contains venom glands linked to a sharp sting. This scorpion's sting is not fatal to humans, having an effect like that of a bee sting. The emperor scorpion feeds on insects, arachnids, small mammals and reptiles. Prey is held in the pincers, stung with the tail, and then eaten with the mouthparts. Photographed in Africa.
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