Scientific Name: Hadogenes troglodytes
Australia has its own rock scorpion, a small light grey-brown species called a marbled scorpion. This species is very common in eastern and southern Australia where it inhabits rock outcrops. They are not often seen but will occasionally wander into houses adjacent to bushland. Although they do have a sting they are not normally regarded as dangerous.
Flat rock scorpions are just that, long, slender, flat-bodied creatures that live amongst rocks. They reach a maximum length of over 18cm and are attractively coloured with rust-brown legs and pincers and a slightly darker body. The tail is very thin and terminates in a small knob housing the sting. The pinchers are quite large and heavily armored.
Flat rock scorpions are widespread over southern Africa where they are found on rock outcrops, particularly in forested areas. Their extremely flattened body enables them to squeeze into the tiniest cracks and crevices during the day to protect themselves against the heat of the day and predators such as reptiles and birds. At night they emerge to wander widely across the rock surfaces in search of prey.
Insects, spiders, other scorpions are the usual food items. These are run down, overpowered by the strong pincers and stung several times. Once immobilized they are slowly eaten by the grinding mouth parts.
As with other scorpions, the young are produced alive and are creamy-white at birth. After a few hours the outer skin or exoskeleton dries and develops its normal brown colouration. Baby scorpions do not feed until after they have had their first skin moult. At this time they will leave the safety of their mother's back and wander off in search of food.