Scorpions

Many Tennesseans and our visitors don’t realize that scorpions are common in our area, especially around forest litter.

Two species of scorpions reside in our area of Tennessee, the Plain Eastern Stripeless Scorpion (Vaejovis carolinianus) and the Striped Scorpion (Centruroides vittatus).

The Plain Eastern Stripeless Scorpion is native to our state. The other species, the Striped Scorpion, was accidentally introduced to Tennessee.

Scorpions have a compact head called a "cephalothorax," a broad segmented abdomen and a tail-like structure called a "telson." The tail tip is enlarged and contains a venomous stinger used for self-defense or to subdue overactive prey. Scorpions can control the amount of venom injected. Venom is injected by thrusting the tail forward over the head and into the prey. The venom of scorpions found in Tennessee is similar to that of a honey bee sting. These scorpions are not like the scorpions found in the western United States. The severity of the reaction is dependent upon the sensitivity of that individual’s body to the venom.

Scorpions are nocturnal hunters feeding at night and hiding during the day. They are most active at temperatures greater than 77 degrees and become sluggish in cold weather. Scorpions are cold blooded, which means they are the same temperature as their surrounding environment. They can also survive long periods of time without food. During the summer months, scorpions usually feed about once a week depending on food availability. They eat crickets, cockroaches, ants, beetles, mealworms, spiders, and butterflies, just to name a few things.

You may find a scorpion in the cabin you are staying in, please remember there is not a lot Timber Tops can do to prevent or control scorpions. Scorpions are usually found in the bathrooms, near the tubs and sinks. They enter the cabins looking for water and usually traveling up the outside of the water pipes.

If you should be lucky enough to encounter one, remember that they are very beneficial in controlling the insect population. Natural predators include birds, frogs, centipedes, spiders, lizards and snakes. Scorpions are very discreet creatures of the night and would prefer to stay hidden.

Please call our guest services line, 1-800-266-1066 if you encounter a Scorpion during your stay and you would like us to remove it from the area.

smoky mountain scorpions