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Best Pet Scorpions

This list is comprised of the 8 best pet scorpion species that have been hand picked for this list.

Scorpions are becoming an increasingly popular pet option among arachnid enthusiasts and keepers.

If you are interested in getting a scorpion, you might want to consider which species is the best choice for you. Although they don’t enjoy handling and aren’t the most cuddle of pets, they are pretty easy to care for, are clean, and are quiet.

There are around 2,000 scorpion species known to man and only 40 of them have strong enough poison to kill a man. Most of them will deliver a very painful sting, but it will most likely not be life-threatening.

Not all scorpions are the same and there are only some specific species that are well-known to make good pets. 

Whether you are a beginner or already love and own some, here is our list of 8 scorpion species that make the best pets:

Best Pet Scorpions

1. Emperor Scorpion 

Emperor Scorpion (Pandinus imperator) in enclosure
Emperor Scorpion (Pandinus imperator) in enclosure

The Emperor Scorpion is the most universally recommended species for beginner scorpion keepers. These are great for first-timers due to their docile nature and classic look.

These shiny, stout, black, or dark brown scorpions showcase broad, bumpy pincers. These guys will also glow green or blue under ultraviolet lights, which makes them look awesome in an enclosure.

These guys will usually not sting unless they feel threatened, and even if they do so, their venom is so mild, you might only experience a mild, localized reaction. 

They may even try to pinch you with their claws first when attacking. Other than feeling threatened the Emperor Scorpion will not act out aggressively.

Hailing from the rainforests and savannas of Western Africa, these guys are some of the largest scorpions in the world.

In the wild, they primarily feed on insects as well as other invertebrates. 

A large portion of their diet is termites since they enjoy burrowing through their mounds to hunt for prey. They are aggressive hunters and will sometimes burrow as deep as 6 feet under in order to find their meal.

Occasionally, they will also enjoy larger vertebrates such as lizards or rodents.

When captive, your adult Emperor Scorpion can eat a diet of crickets, mealworms, roaches, and waxworms. Give them around 3 or 4 insects every week at night since they are active nocturnal hunters.

If you are planning to keep one, be sure to give them at least a 10-gallon tank’s worth of space. While they do not require much to survive, but they are shy by nature, so make sure you have enough space to provide them with hiding spots to keep them comfortable.

2. Tanzanian Red-Clawed Scorpion

Tanzanian Red Clawed Scorpion (Pandinus cavimanus)
Tanzanian Red Clawed Scorpion (Pandinus cavimanus)
  • Experience Level: Intermediate
  • Family: Scorpionidae
  • Scientific Name: Pandinus cavimanus
  • Alternative Names: Red Claw Scorpion
  • Adult Size: 3.5 to 5 inches
  • Lifespan: 8 years (sometimes more in captivity)
  • Average Price Range: $14 to $50 per scorpion
  • Where to buy:

Being the same genus as the popular Emperor Scorpion, the Tanzanian Red-Claw Scorpion is like their smaller cousins. 

They have similar stocky, black, or dark brown bodies, but the Tanzanian Red-claw will also have crimson claws and legs.

These guys may not be suitable for some beginners since they are a lot more defensive than their cousins and will sting or snip at you to defend themselves. 

Their sting has never been known to kill anyone and can be compared to that of a bee sting.

They are easily agitated and will attack in defense so if you are new to keeping scorpions, you might want to opt for a more docile scorpion. 

However, due to their beautiful rusty coloring and smaller size, they are 

quite sought-after by collectors.

These guys can be found in the tropical rainforests of Tanzanian, Africa hiding under rocks or logs. 

They are nocturnal hunters and are great at their game. They will scavenge the humid floors of the rainforest for insects, frogs, and small rodents. 

In captivity, you can feed them the same things; insects like locusts or crickets, frogs, and pinky mice every 3 to 4 days should do. 

You mustn’t house them with any roommates since they are also known to be cannibalistic. They may also just try to fight and kill them since they are not fans of having company.

Another reason why this species is recommended only for intermediate keepers is because of their humidity requirements. 

You should try your best to give them a home that is close to that of their natural habitat. Red-Claws require a humidity level of 75 to 80 percent to live comfortably.

3. Giant Forest Scorpion

Giant Forest Scorpion (Heterometrus spinifer) on hand
Giant Forest Scorpion (Heterometrus spinifer) on hand
  • Experience Level: Intermediate
  • Family: Scorpionidae
  • Scientific Name: Heterometrus spinifer
  • Alternative Names: Giant Forest Scorpion, Giant Blue Scorpion, Malaysian Forest Scorpion, Malaysian Black Scorpion
  • Adult Size: 4 to 5 inches
  • Lifespan: 7 to 8 years
  • Average Price Range: $25 to $65 per scorpion (depending on size)
  • Where to buy:,

The Malaysian Black Scorpion is a large species that is harder to obtain in the pet trade. They aren’t ideal for beginners due to their aggressive nature and tendency to attack with their pincers.

As with all the scorpions on this list, the venom is not deadly and can be compared to that of a bee sting. They will most likely snap their claws in defense before they try to sting you, though.

Although some people choose to keep them, they only grow more aggressive in captivity and it is very hard for them to get accustomed to being in an enclosure.

This hardy scorpion has a shiny all-black body with large claws and a blue-green illumination.

They come from Southeast Asian countries such as Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, and of course, Malaysia.

Malaysian Forest Scorpions are known to burrow or make a hide out of logs or other debris during the day. They are terrestrial scorpions that scavenge the moist forest floors at night, hunting for prey.

In the wild, their diet consists of large insects like locusts, crickets, and sometimes small mice, if they run into one.

If you are keeping one, you can feed them all of the things listed above as well as grasshoppers, and Tenebrio larvae. When it comes to feeding them pinkie mice, you should only make these an occasional snack about once or twice a month.

This species will require at least a 5-gallon terrarium with damp sand as a substrate.

Since they come from Southeast Asian forests, they need humid conditions to survive. Temperatures of 75 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit and a humidity level of 75 to 80 percent should be maintained for their health and comfort.

4. Large Clawed Scorpion

Large Clawed Scorpion (Scorpio maurus fuscus)
Large Clawed Scorpion (Scorpio maurus fuscus)
  • Experience Level: Intermediate
  • Family: Scorpionidae
  • Scientific Name: Scorpio maurus
  • Alternative Names: Israeli Gold Scorpion, Israeli Large Claw, Middle East Gold Scorpion
  • Adult Size: 2 to 3 inches
  • Lifespan: Around 5 years or less
  • Average Price Range: $20 to $120 per scorpion (depending on age, sex, and size)
  • Where to buy:

Native to the wild deserts of Northern African and the Middle East, these smaller scorpions are golden and equipped with large, strong claws.

They are great diggers and can be found in their desert burrows.

While they are beautiful creatures, most keepers are wary of keeping them due to their environmental requirements. These guys are notorious for dying on their owners in under a year, making them a little harder to keep than other scorpions.

They require an arid environment with sand and eco earth substrate and consistent temperatures between 75-80 degrees Fahrenheit as well as humidity levels around 75 to 80 percent.

Their scientific name, maurus, is a Latin word for “dark” or “obscure”. 

Their bodies are an almost translucent-looking gold, their backs brown, and their large claws are the same golden have reddish-brown tips to their pincers. Their stinger will sometimes have the same brown tip at its end.

They like to feed on locusts and crickets every other day.

5. Javanese Jungle Scorpion

Javanese Forest Scorpion (Heterometrus javanensis)
Javanese Jungle Scorpion (Heterometrus javanensis) – courtesy project Noah
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Scorpionidae
  • Scientific Name: Heterometrus javanensis
  • Adult Size: 4 to 7 inches
  • Lifespan:  5 to 8 years

Javanese Jungle Scorpions are a difficult kind to obtain in the pet trade. This is why they are highly sought after by collectors and enthusiasts.

Although they are very hard to find, if you can somehow manage to get one, they are quite good for beginners due to their easy handling.

While they can show aggression, they can also get along with other scorpions if you are considering keeping more than one.

They will usually react well unless they are provoked, just like most scorpions.

These scorpions are native to Indonesian rainforests and are black or dark brown with a green tint. They are stocky and will use their claws and stinger as self-defense or to protect themselves.

You can feed your pet Javanese crickets, locusts, roaches, mealworms, butterworms, and houseflies.

You should give them at least a 10-gallon terrarium with, at the least, 3 inches of substrate. They require temperatures between 75 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit as well as around 55 percent humidity.

6. Desert Hairy Scorpion

Desert Hairy Scorpion (Hadrurus arizonensis)
Desert Hairy Scorpion (Hadrurus arizonensis)

These scorpions can be found in the Southwestern states of the U.S., particularly Arizona, the Colorado Desert, the Mojave Desert in California, southern Nevada, and southwest Utah.

Arizona Desert Hairy Scorpions enjoy semi-arid and arid environments. they like to hide in their burrows as well as behind logs and stones.

Their bodies might be olive green or tan in color and their back will be a darker shade compared to their body. They have yellow claws, legs, and tails, which may also have brown hairs on them.

This specific species is not recommended for beginners due to their environmental requirements. They need a desert set-up with a 3-inch layer of coarse sand as well as the very occasional misting every now and then.

They also require temperatures between 70 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit and humidity levels of around 55 percent at all times. These numbers are important to keep your scorpion healthy and comfortable.

It is also important to mention that their sting will hurt a little more since their venom is a bit more potent. They are skittish and will show defensive behavior if you try to make contact with them.

They have a defensive stance and once you see that, you should back off and let them be. You will know how it looks because it will come often with these distrusting creatures.

In the wild, their diet mostly consists of locusts as well as smaller scorpions. In captivity, you can feed them small insects like crickets.

Since these guys are very territorial, you should not house them with other scorpions.

7. Dictator Scorpion

  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Scorpionidae
  • Scientific Name: Pandinus dictator
  • Adult Size: About 8 inches
  • Lifespan: 5 to 8 years
  • Average Price Range: $20 to $50 per scorpion
  • Where to buy:,

Closely related to the Emperor Scorpion, Dictator Scorpions are impressively large with strong, broad pincers. These timid creatures will spend most of their time in hiding due to their shy nature.

These rare, large, hefty scorpions are dark brown or black in color. They have thicker bodies and look almost like a lobster with a scorpion’s stinger attached to them.

These can be good scorpions for beginners since they are calm around humans as long as you are dealing with them calmly. They aren’t necessarily aggressive and will only react if provoked, as all scorpions do.

They can be found in Central African states such as Gabon, Cameroon, Congo, and Equatorial Guinea.

They are carnivores that like to ambush their prey in the wild. Their diet mainly consists of insects like crickets, mealworms, and roaches. You can give them waxworms as an occasional treat if you wish.

You want to give them the space of at least a 10-gallon tank with the appropriate substrate such as peat moss or potting soil around 4 inches deep to support burrowing.

8. Asian Forest Scorpion

Asian Forest Scorpion (Heterometrus longimanus)
Asian Forest Scorpion (Heterometrus longimanus)
  • Experience Level: Beginner
  • Family: Scorpionidae
  • Scientific Name: Heterometrus longimanus
  • Adult Size: 3 to 5 inches
  • Lifespan: 5 to 8 years
  • Average Price Range: $10 to $40 per scorpion (depending on age, size, and sex)
  • Where to buy:

Asian Forest Scorpions will look very similar to Emperor Scorpions with their all-black or dark brown bodies, except they are smaller.

This species is known to be somewhat territorial and won’t be as friendly as an Emperor Scorpion, but are more likely to try to protect themselves with their claws before they attempt to sting you.

They are pretty hardy and can live for up to eight years in captivity, making them a great option for keeping as a pet. They are also low-maintenance and easy to keep as well as easy to breed if you are interested in doing so.

They can be found in the tropical rainforests of Southern Asia in countries like Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Singapore. They are big eaters and like to feast on crickets and spiders.

You should try to get your Asian Forest at least a 10-gallon tank per scorpion. Since they do breed easily, you might want to make sure you get enough space for them per scorpion.

Pet Scorpion FAQ

Do scorpions make good pets?

For those who are prepared to learn how to properly care for them, scorpions can be very interesting pets. They are clean, quiet, and low-maintenance pets.

While some people worry or are scared of them due to their venomous stingers, you shouldn’t fear them because they are mostly not dangerous.

Pick one from our list and you will most likely have a great time keeping these awesome creatures. They can make good pets for those who will out in the effort to care for them and keep them healthy.

Is a scorpion a good pet for a child?

While scorpions are not likely to harm your pet or child, it is not recommended to let a child keep a scorpion if they are under 8 years of age.

Not because the scorpion could be a danger to them, but the other way around. A child might not know how to correctly handle or care for this arachnid and it should be cared for by a responsible adult.

Scorpions will react aggressively if they are feeling threatened. A child may not be able to tell when to leave it alone and may get snipped by a pincer or stung.

This should not hurt them any more than a bee sting would and shouldn’t cause any seriously bad reaction.

They are not as easy to care for as a tarantula would be. So while we don’t recommend children keep them, they will not harm your child in any serious way.

How long do pet scorpions live?

It is known that scorpions can live up to twice their normal lifespan in an enclosure. When they are in the wild, they are more prone to getting eaten by prey.

Typically, scorpions might live anywhere from 3 to 6 years in the wild, and some have been known to live up to 15 years in an enclosure.

This number will also depend on what species it is as well as husbandry. Some may live longer whereas other species might just die more easily.


Scorpions can make a great pet for enthusiasts and owners that have a passion for them or find them interesting.

We hope that this article helped you come up with a conclusion about whether you want a scorpion or which species might be best for your level of expertise.

Do your research to make sure you are going to be able to provide the right environment and a comfortable home for your pet.

If you have any more questions, go ahead and leave them in our comment section below.

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