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Discovery Magazine 1/1/2007


The Scorpion’s Venomous Weapon

The scorpion is an invertebrate (it has no backbone), but it has a segmented tail-like appendage that packs a powerful punch to its enemies. Look closely, and notice that the scorpion’s tail is tipped with a venomous stinger. Scorpions use their stingers to capture prey, defend themselves, and possibly to subdue mates. These little animals can control the venom flow, so some stings do not have any venom or are only mildly poisonous.

I remember seeing a scorpion at summer camp when I was about 10 years old, but I didn’t know if it was dangerous. All scorpions have venom, though they generally are harmless and timid, running from danger. Watch out, though, because if they feel threatened they might use their stingers. Although you should try to avoid scorpion stings, most of them won’t cause serious damage. In humans, stings typically produce effects such as pain, numbness, or swelling only in the area where the sting occurs. A few scorpion species pose a serious threat to humans. But God also gave humans the ability to learn about the venomous tail so that we can avoid its harmful sting. 

God gave scorpions an incredibly well-designed tail to help them survive. We may not think of small creatures like scorpions as possessing weapons to defend themselves against threatening creatures, but they do. They also fit perfectly into the marvelous design of God’s creation.   



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