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Whip Scorpion

Common name for a member of an order of terrestrial invertebrate arachnids, commonly known as vinegarroons or uropygids, and referred to by the scientific designation Thelyphonida. Members of this order are up to 8.5 centimeters long and to some extent resemble true scorpions (fig.). They have a whip-like tail, similar to that of Water Scorpions (fig.). Like true scorpions, Whip Scorpions have one pair of eyes at the front of the cephalothorax and three on each side of the head. They are not venomous, but they do have glands near the back of their abdomen, that can spray a combination of acetic and octanoic acid when they feel threatened. This spray has a vinegar-like smell, giving rise to its common name vinegarroon. Many species of Whip Scorpion also have large pincers, known as pedipalps, which are used to crush their prey. They are nocturnal hunters, feeding mostly on insects, and occur in many tropical and subtropical areas of the world. They live in dark and humid places, avoiding the light, generally in burrows, where they also feed and breed. In Thai, these invertebrates are called maengpong sae. See maengpong for true scorpions. See List of Thai Insect Names.