Texas is home to 18 scorpion species, most of which reside in rural areas where residents are unlikely to encounter the arachnids. All rural-dwelling scorpion species can potentially be found within homes, but the species that is most well known for invading homes is commonly known as the striped bark scorpion. The striped bark scorpion is the most frequently encountered scorpion species in the United States, both indoors and outdoors, and their population is most concentrated in Texas where the stinging arachnids often appear in homes throughout the state.
The tan-colored striped bark scorpion may not cut an intimidating figure due to their 1 to 2 inch body size, but they can inflict extremely painful stings to humans and pets. Thousands of sting incidents involving striped bark scorpions are reported to poison control centers each year in Texas alone, and while this species’ venom is not lethal to humans, serious allergic reactions have been known to occur in response to their stings. Scorpions are active year round in Texas, but they are most abundant between the early spring and late fall seasons. Striped bark scorpions are particularly common indoor pests in San Antonio, and the fall season sees the highest infestation rates.
During the months of December and January, striped bark scorpions are hard to come by in the natural environment, and very few infestation cases are reported during this time. However, these scorpions remain common household pests well into November, and they begin to reappear in homes during February, but infestation rates remain largely steady in San Antonio homes in between spring and fall. Striped bark scorpions are obviously well adapted to exceptionally hot and arid environments, but the summers in southwest Texas often become too hot and dry for this species’ comfort. This is why it is not uncommon to find these scorpions invading homes en masse on the hottest summer days where they seek out water and more comfortable temperatures. These mass invasions occurred last July in San Antonio for this very reason, and experts anticipate that these invasions will become more frequent in the coming years due to recent climatic trends in Texas. Striped bark scorpions can be found beneath wood piles, stones and lawn debris in residential areas during most of the year in Texas; and when they invade homes, they can be seen climbing walls. For reasons that are not yet understood, these scorpions are well known for congregating in attics.
Have you ever witnessed a scorpion/s climbing a vertical surface?