Last Sunday we visited Zempoala (also spelled Cempoala). After a look at the pyramids, a rest near and in the river, and a nice, interesting walk, Esme suddenly spotted what looked like a thin long black snake. I tried to capture it but it violently wriggled and was gone.
We both tried to find out where it was hiding, moving away a lot of old rusty garbage. I also removed an old coconut shell buried in the sand, but no snake. When Esme looked in the hole the coconut shell had left, she discovered a very small scorpion which we took with us back to our home in Xalapa.
Today I took some pictures of the very small scorpion, which looked quite fat from the termite I had fed it the night before.
The above picture shows the scorpion on a small piece of wood. From head to the start of the tail (the triangular piece) it measures about 8 mm (0.3 inch). In the background you can see the plastic lid of the enclosure with ventilation holes. I put the lid under the piece of wood in case the scorpion would try to make a run for freedom.
The above close up of the scorpion clearly shows the very nice reddish brown colors of it's legs and claws. The picture has a width of approximately 2 cm (about 0.8 inch). My best guess is that it is a juvenile Centruroides, but which species, I have no idea.
The second close up shows the claws of the scorpion a bit sharper, and the stinger a bit blurred. Together the two close ups give a good impression of how the scorpion looks, and what the limits of my camera are (Philips ESP60, antique by nowadays standards).
When I caught the scorpion last Sunday, I immediately had an idea of in what I was going to keep it: an empty plastic Ferrero Rocher box. I already had used it to keep some small crickets, but that was some time ago.
I used a hot needle to make holes in the lid. With a glue gun I glued some stones together to make some kind of hiding place. I had brought some sand with me, the same sand the scorpion was found on. I added also some small pieces of old dry wood.
The above picture shows how the small terrarium looks after decorating. If you look close you can spot the scorpion on a piece of wood in the center of the image.
The box is about 14 cm x 8 cm x 7 cm ( w x d x h ), and looks to me sufficient for such a tiny scorpion. A small bottle cap is being used to hold some water. I put some small stones inside the cap, since I am afraid that otherwise the scorpion might fall in and drown.
Today I put another termite in the little plastic scorpion enclosure, and after a few minutes I saw the scorpion munching it away.
The scorpion glows a similar green-yellow compared to my other scorpions when exposed to UV light (black light) as generated by the UV LED scorpion detector I made.