Is it True That Smaller Scorpions are More Poisonous?

smaller scorpions more deadly

A common belief people have is that smaller Scorpions are more poisonous.  While the size of the Scorpion can be tied to how much damage it can do, Scorpions aren’t poisonous.  Scorpions, like all organisms that bite or sting to inject toxins, are actually venomous.  Poisonous organisms release toxins when they are eaten or absorbed by touching the skin.

Equally false to the myth about smaller Scorpions being more poisonous is the myth that they are aggressive and deadly.  Scorpions aren’t as liberal with their stingers as many people believe. And they prefer to sting prey, not humans.  They are more likely to pinch or run when seeing humans.  However, myths like the one about smaller Scorpions being more poisonous, have led people to be terrified of them.  Like most things, not understanding Scorpions has lead the the fear of them.  Closer to the truth, is that they don’t have to be feared, even the smaller scorpions said to be more “poisonous.”

Why do people think smaller Scorpions are more poisonous?

There are a few reasons but mostly it’s mis-education.  They aren’t fully aware that Scorpions aren’t poisonous and they have probably heard the phrase used by many people they know and trust.  Studies show that beliefs we learned from people we care about are harder to let go.

It’s also likely that the rumor about smaller Scorpions being more poisonous started with someone who didn’t know the difference in the two words instead of a biologist.  Regardless of the terminology, it’s easy to see why people would believe smaller Scorpions are more harmful, because that is actually true.

Is it because smaller Scorpions are more venomous? 

Not quite.  It’s because they sting more often than bigger Scorpions.  A common misconception about why smaller Scorpions sting more frequently is because they have not yet learned how to control their impulse to attack.  While it could have some validity to it, it’s probably for a more natural reason.

Larger Scorpions typically have pinchers that are much more powerful than smaller Scorpions.  For this reason, they can typically disable their prey without needing to sting it.  Smaller Scorpions on the other hand don’t have such luck.  They pinch first and sting shortly after in most cases.  It’s believed they can use one of two types of venom, one that kills and one that disables.

Is the venom of a smaller Scorpion more deadly?

Not really.  Venom from all Scorpions, regardless of size and age is still venom.  While some species have venom that is more dangerous than others, it has little to do with their size or age.  Very few types of Scorpions are deadly and for the most part the venom from a Scorpion regardless of size will cause some serious symptoms.  It’s said that symptoms from a Scorpion sting do pass in time as long as it isn’t deadly.

Smaller Scorpions aren’t more deadly than larger ones but they are more likely to sting and inject their venom.  While this rumor has some truth to it, the only good way to see a Scorpion is while backing away, it’s just not worth the risk to disturb them.

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