Friday, September 21, 2018

Fall Armyworms

armywormI have been getting questions on armyworms and consulting with other entomologists, they have been as well.  So, instead of me recreating the wheel, I am going to link you to a publication written by Dr. Allen Knutson.

Also, if you want to learn how to prepare your home to keep unwanted guest- in this case insects, not relatives- from entering your house, check out this month's All Bugs Good and Bad webinar provided by Janet Hurley.

Friday, September 7, 2018

Texas cave scorpion

Most people in Central Texas are well aware of striped bark scorpions as they can be found in the landscape and sometimes will venture indoors.  We have another scorpion that can be found in the area, the Texas cave scorpion.
Texas cave scorpion with babies
Scorpions are arachnids with eight legs and two body regions.   Scorpions have two pincers or claws, called pedipalps, which help them hold their prey as they eat.  They also have a long tail with a stinger on the tip that can be used for defense or to paralyze their prey.  Cave scorpions are dark in color and have thicker pedipalps than the striped bark scorpions.

Texas cave scorpions do not live in the same locations as striped bark scorpions.  They live guessed it!....CAVES!  They can also be found in grottos or other limestone features, so these will be in rockier areas of Central Texas.

Texas cave scorpion with babies UV glowSo why am I rattling on about cave scorpions?  My cave scorpion had babies yesterday!!  They are so incredibly cute!  I was unaware that my scorpion was even pregnant.  Scorpions are viviparous, meaning they give birth to live young.  The gestation period can last for 2-18 months. Considering that I did not have a male, this female had to be pregnant when I got her.  Female scorpions exhibit maternal care and will carry the babies around on their bodies until the undergo the first molt.

I have included an image that I took of the momma and babies under a black light so you can see that the babies don't fluoresce or glow like the adults will.