Does Arizona Have Scorpions

Does Arizona Have Scorpions
Kelley Norton:
They’re creepy and they’re crawly and all the scary things that the Arizona desert brings, oh, to mind. Oh my gosh. Hey, I’m Kelley Norton and I’m your AZ Realty lady. And I’m here today to give you some information firsthand from a Valley native of what it’s like living here, and are these creepy crawly things really that scary? And the answer is, of course they aren’t if you’re not familiar and if you’re not from Arizona.

Hi, I’m Kelley Norton, your AZ Realty lady at eXp Realty. Count on me for all things Arizona real estate.

So I want to start off with telling you that I’ve lived here my entire life, so that’s 40 something years. And I have never been stung by a scorpion. I have never been bit by a black widow spider. I’ve never been bit by a snake. So let me put your mind at ease with that. So let’s start with the spiders and let’s talk about that.

So we are in the desert. So black widows, brown recluse spiders, those are definitely something that we do have here. And they’re usually going to be found in near woodpiles or in your garage or in a shed. The black widow web, I’ve definitely seen black widows and their webs are really thick. And they’re pretty noticeable. Once you see a black widow on that web, you know what that one looks like forever. Thanks so much for watching my video. If you like the information that I’m sharing, please subscribe to my channel and click the bell. And you’ll be notified when I drop new videos. Thanks so much. Take care.

The brown recluse spider actually has an upside down violin on its back. And both of these are poisonous spiders. You want to be careful with elderly people or infants, children with the black widow specially, that’s when I guess it could be deadly. I don’t know anyone that’s been killed by one of those spiders, but I guess it can happen. But if you keep pest control, you should be good. Again, I’ve seen these spiders and never been bit by them. So just keep your little insect down and get regular pest control and you should not have a problem with that. Also don’t go lurking through your garage or your shed at night, because that’s when they’re going to be out on their web trying to eat. So be careful with that.

Now, let’s talk about snakes. Okay. So of course, we’re known for having rattlesnakes here in Arizona, but the one that people don’t talk about quite as much would be the Arizona coral snake. And both of these snakes can be found out here in Arizona. The coral snake is really vibrant in color. So you should know it when you see it and steer clear of it. It’s red and black and it often has a third stripe that is like a cream or yellowy or white color. So I don’t believe that this is a snake that’s known to cause death to humans, but do your research on it but steer clear.

Listen, these snakes hide. They don’t want to be found. So if you run into one, it’s probably because you were somewhere that you shouldn’t be. And they like to hide underneath woodpiles or rocks and really you’re not going to run into those very often.

Now, the rattlesnake, usually they’re trained to avoid human contact at all possibilities. So this is what you need to know about a rattlesnake in Arizona. They’re going to warn you if you’re too close. So when you hear that rattle, you want to stop and then slowly back away. They can actually lunge pretty far. So you don’t want to try and poke them with a stick or get closer. I learned when my son was in boy scouts, that a lot of the rattle snake bites to humans is actually because people are messing with them. So leave them alone. I’ve seen them and I respect them, and I walk away from them. And if they’re on my trail when I’m out hiking, then I wait for them to continue to go across the trail or I go far around. So just leave them alone.

And remember, if you’re out in the desert and let’s say you’re picking up a rock or moving logs or something, you want to be careful doing that, because during the day they’re going to hide. Oftentimes some of these snakes, I think especially the coral snake will come out during rain, but otherwise, during the day, they’re hiding. And I think that they’re really just trying to stay away from you. And then at night, they come out and they eat. So little rodents and little lizards is what their diet is mostly made of.

You want to be careful with your pets, though. So I have heard of people walking their dogs, and of course, dogs are curious. So dogs like to sniff and check out the bushes a lot. And sometimes the neighborhoods, the snake will be up underneath a bush. And if you’re out walking on a trail, there’ll be up underneath the bush and you won’t know that they’re there. And if you walk by, they may rattle, but sometimes the dogs catch them by surprise because they’re sleeping. And that’s when a dog can get bit. If your dog gets bit or if you get bit, you need to get medical attention pretty quickly, especially with a pet. I’ve heard of more severe issues with the pets, for sure. So just be careful with that.

When you’re in the city center, you’re not going to come across these things, but if you’re in the suburbs and you’re out in the desert or you have a home that has a view fence on the back, that’s when you’re more likely to come across these creatures.

I personally love our desert. And so, I live out in the suburbs. I live in an area where if I walk at the end of the street, there’s a desert there. I do have a fence fully around my yard, and I’ve never had a snake in my yard, but people who have view fences, the snakes can come right up into the yard. So you just want to be aware of it, if you have pets, especially, but as far as the human, usually you’re going to see them or they’re going to warn you long before.

Now, here’s a little tip for your dogs, too. So there is something that a lot of people here know called rattlesnake proofing for your pet. Now, what this is, is it’s a training where you take your dog and they introduce them to the snake. And there’s several different ways that they can do it. Some of them have non venomous snakes that they’ll allow the rattlesnake, they’ll allow them to bite the dogs. They feel it. And then others, they use a shock collar. So as soon as the dog gets too close, then they’ll give a little shock to the dogs so that the dog is understanding this is going to cause me pain. So they’re aware of the rattlesnake. So if they ever have that smell or they hear that sound, they back off from it. So that’s something that is maybe wise for you to do for your pet as well.

Now, I hear that it’s not a one and done. You need to follow up on this so that your dog doesn’t forget about it. If you do it as a puppy, they may forget. So just keep that in mind, it’s something to follow up on. And once you move here, I’m happy to put you in contact with some companies that do that.

Now, another thing is, is that … and talk to your veterinarian about it, but is rattlesnake vaccination. I have heard from some vets that they don’t like to give them because there is a higher chance of a reaction that the dog will have to that vaccination, and other veterinarians, they believe in it. And they do give that vaccination.

Now, this doesn’t make your dog rattlesnake proof. If they get bit, it just … I heard that it just buys you a little bit more time to get to the hospital. Unfortunately, I did hear from one vet that people take advantage of that. So they don’t get their dog to the hospital as quickly as possible. They finish whatever they’re doing and then they take their dogs, so the severity is still the same as if they didn’t have a vaccination. So bottom line is if you or your dog get big, get emergency help immediately and you shouldn’t have a problem.

All right. So some of the other kind of elusive creatures that we have here would be coyotes, mountain lions and bobcats. So mountain lions, you’re really not going to see those too much unless you’re up near the room country, which is like North, Northeastern Arizona, maybe near the Four Peaks area and the White Mountains area. So mountain lions, they’re going to try and avoid you, but you really just hope that you don’t come across those, but they are out there. Very, very rare to see them though. Bobcat, you’ll see more in the desert area. So you can find these North Scottsdale, areas of Tucson. Again, the suburbs where there’s a desert outlying area bobcats can be found. And you just want to be careful if you have small pets, because they will go after small pets, if they’re easy to get to. And the other one that will do that also is coyotes.

So coyotes are … again, if you’re in the city, not as likely to see those, but if you’re out near the desert, coyotes are out there and they’re usually going to be out mostly at night, but I have seen them cross washes and cross the streets during the day. And they usually don’t bother anything. And my dogs are ranging between 25 and 60 pounds. And I haven’t had any issues, but I also haven’t put my dog right in front of a coyote to see what it would do. So try and avoid them. If you’re walking your dog on a leash, just stop, go the other way or make noise and they should go away.

Another thing that you might see, which is a little interesting is a javelina. Now, a javelina looks like a wild pig. They are known to be somewhat aggressive, especially to pets, but I’ve also heard that they were kind of blind. So that may be why they’re aggressive. I’m not sure, but these are usually in packs when they’re traveling and they’re just looking for garbage and stuff to eat. And usually you can smell them before you see them. They stink. They’re gross. But if you see them, when you’re out walking again, just stop, make noise, go the other way. I have not heard of them say chasing you down, but if you’re going up to them, then they can be aggressive. So just be careful with that.

Now, let’s talk about scorpions. Okay. So everybody is so worried about scorpions in Arizona, and they’re here. Absolutely. And they’re called bark scorpions, which is the one that’s the most dangerous. There’s other kinds of scorpions. I think the giant hairy scorpion is one. And I think there’s a stripe scorpion. Those are larger. I think the hairy scorpion has maybe five inches and then the striped one has about two inches. Bark scorpions can be really, really small. And I’ve seen bark scorpions be about this big. So the bark scorpions are the ones that can cause you some pain and might sting your dog and cause a little inflammation for your dog.

Now, usually, the bark scorpion isn’t going to be deadly unless it’s an infant or an elderly person with illness. And so you do your own research on that, but that’s my understanding. And any pest control company here in Arizona can certainly shed more light on the bark scorpion for you. But if you’re in your yard and there’s a rock there, daytime, they’re going to be hiding. So you want to kick over a rock, not use your hands because if he’s there, it can sting you. Again, I’ve never been stung by a scorpion. I’ve had scorpions in my house. I’ve seen scorpions outside. I’ve been out in the desert. I’ve seen them on trees at night, and they glow. So it’s kind of cool is if you want to see if you have them in your yard, get a black light. My husband, he likes to go out with a beer and a black light and shine on the fence and see what we have.

And then he’ll just smash them with a sandal. And he likes to think that he’s controlling the scorpion population. So we’ll let him think that. So these can get in your house. If you have a door open, they really can slide in the smallest little space. So their diet is primarily crickets and insects. So keep your pests down. So get regular pest control and that’ll definitely help. And then there are pest control companies that do a ceiling of the house. So I’ve never done that myself. I get a couple of scorpions a year in my house. I see them, I kill them. My dogs play with them, not had a problem. I also have a cat and I guess cats can help with them too, as far as, as killing them and keeping them down, keeping the population down of the scorpions.

It’s my understanding that cats can’t be affected. I have heard both sides of that story that maybe they can be affected, but I’ve heard from most people that their cats play with them and get stung and kill them and it doesn’t do anything to them. So if you get stung by a scorpion and you’re allergic to bees, you might have more of a reaction. So if it’s your first time being stung, watch it. Definitely, check with your medical provider and see if you need to be going in and getting some medical attention. I have heard that you can get a shock feeling when you get stung that maybe goes down your leg or down your spine. Again, I’ve never been stung, but this is just what I’ve heard from other people. But if you’re concerned about scorpions, you definitely want to make sure that you keep down your insects. And then also, you want to make sure that you talk to a pest control company about just sealing the exterior of your house, because you can do a really good job of keeping them out.

I’ve also heard you can put diatomaceous earth around and then as they crawl over the diatomaceous earth, I’ve heard that that scratches up their stomach. And so that’s something you can do to. I lived on a mountain out in Northeast Mesa when my son was born, it was in a community called Las Sendas and all desert mountains. And we had scorpions. So what I did was I put my crib in these little glass jars. So I put his crib in the glass jar because the scorpion, they can’t make it up the glass, they just keep sliding down. And then I did double-sided tape around his crib area up on the ceiling because then that way, when the scorpion would hit the double-sided tape, it wouldn’t be able to make it any further. So I hope that helps as well and gives you an idea of maybe what you can do to prevent it. But I had a newborn baby in a house and I had scorpions and he’s now 15. We’re good.

The number one thing you should really be concerned about in Arizona that I’ve heard is the most deadliest thing is the killer bees. These are Africanized bees that migrated and they’re pretty much the same type of European honeybee that we had had. But the issue is, is that they travel in the bigger numbers and they’re more aggressive and they really protect that hive. So what happens is that you’re more likely to get stung by more bees and have an allergic reaction to it. So that’s actually the number one killer here are the bees. So be aware of that. If you have a hive or if you see a hive traveling, stay away from it because it could be the Africanized bees and they do attack and they’re pretty aggressive. And they will just go after and start stinging. And any one or two bee stings isn’t a problem but if you get hundreds of thousands of bee stings, that’s when you really could have a serious life-threatening issue.

So I hope that you found all of this information useful. Again, I’m Kelley Norton, your AZ Realty Lady. Drop me a message. You can always call me. My number is right here. And thanks again for watching. And I want to let you know, I have only been stung by a bee twice in my life. I’ve never been bit by a rattlesnake. I’ve never been stung by a scorpion. I’ve never seen a coral snake, and the javelinas, the coyotes, mountain lions, bobcats, I’ve actually seen all of those and have never had an issue with any of them. And I’ve lived here my entire life and always lived right near the desert. So hopefully that gives you a little bit of peace of mind. Have a great day, guys. Take care.
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