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 Help -- Is my scorp in 'rigor mortis' (if possible), or still alive but gravely sick?

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Hex0mega74
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Number of posts : 5
Age : 24
Registration date : 2013-10-29

PostSubject: Help -- Is my scorp in 'rigor mortis' (if possible), or still alive but gravely sick?   11/1/2013, 5:44 am

Sort of a follow up to my previous post about my scorp showing pre-death symptoms of my other emperor that died a few days ago:
http://www.scorpion-forum.com/t10697-discovered-emp-dead-other-scorp-in-commune-displaying-similar-pre-death-behaviour

Long story short, moved my 2 scorpions into a new enclosure last week with the aftermath that 1 died shortly after. (During last weekend)

My other scorp started mimicking his pre-death behaviour since Tuesday (i.e stilting for hours on end) and yesterday evening I noted my remaining scorp's legs were twitching violently, followed by the scorp almost attempting to pull them off with his pincers and flicking his stinger on them.
Checked up on him later; he could not walk. He was moving by dragging himself along the substrate with his pincers and using his metasoma to push him forward, while his legs were either limp or twitching.
Shortly after, I found him on his back, limbs quivering. I helped him over, and went to bed.

This morning I found him in the same spot - But his body is entirely rigid and hard; unlike my other dead scorp who I found  limp a few days ago. He is almost "frozen" with his telson high above his body and his pincers above the ground. Torso also isn't moving whatsoever, he is completely solid.

Is it possible for dead scorpions to enter rigor mortis? If not, is my scorp still alive?

Also, *what* would cause a scorpion to act in the above manner?? (The twitching, being unable to walk, etc.)


I have a very strong suspicion that the new substrate I used affected them, because while I was prepping the pete moss I noted a different smell, and as it dried slightly I realized the smell was somewhat chemical. (After the death of my firt scorp, I removed the other one but it seems it was too late.)
The rest of the conditions for the scorps were met to a T, so I find it too much of a coincidence that both would die after a substrate change.
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robert44
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Location : Houston, Texas, USA
Registration date : 2012-08-25

PostSubject: Re: Help -- Is my scorp in 'rigor mortis' (if possible), or still alive but gravely sick?   11/1/2013, 7:01 am

I agree it sounds like something bad was in the substrate. If your scorp is still alive as a last ditch effort you might try washing him off with luke warm water to hopefully remove any chemical traces, and placing him in a scorp "ICU." This is just a small enclosure with moist chemical free paper towel as substrate and a small water bowl. Make sure you keep him at the perfect temp and wash very well anything from his old enclosure. He may already be dead but I usually wait 24 hours after an invert seems dead to pronounce him dead.

I'm really sorry this happened to you. If you don't mind, what brand of substrate where you using?
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Hex0mega74
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PostSubject: Re: Help -- Is my scorp in 'rigor mortis' (if possible), or still alive but gravely sick?   11/4/2013, 1:24 pm

robert44 wrote:
I agree it sounds like something bad was in the substrate.  If your scorp is still alive as a last ditch effort you might try washing him off with luke warm water to hopefully remove any chemical traces, and placing him in a scorp "ICU."  This is just a small enclosure with moist chemical free paper towel as substrate and a small water bowl.  Make sure you keep him at the perfect temp and wash very well anything from his old enclosure.  He may already be dead but I usually wait 24 hours after an invert seems dead to pronounce him dead.

I'm really sorry this happened to you.  If you don't mind, what brand of substrate where you using?
Excuse the late update; my little guy passed away. Can say for sure now it was the substrate.

I confirmed it with the pet shop - It was a Chinese brand called "Reptil Soil" that I tried for the first time.
According to the manager, the store couldn't get stock from their long time supplier (produced locally and from reliable source) and had to stock this new brand, and apparently numerous tarantulas that were on display had died since the staff changed their substrate...

Coincidentally (or not,) the manager told me that they also prepared compressed moss from this "Reptil Soil" brand and the smell was pungent like it was rotting. Quality issues are apparent here.

Thanks stacks for your advice, I'll put it to good use if I have to handle a situation like this again. Much appreciated.
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robert44
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PostSubject: Re: Help -- Is my scorp in 'rigor mortis' (if possible), or still alive but gravely sick?   11/4/2013, 4:26 pm

Sorry you little guy died. I'll watch for this #@*^ brand of substrate!
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Tongue Flicker
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PostSubject: Re: Help -- Is my scorp in 'rigor mortis' (if possible), or still alive but gravely sick?   2/8/2014, 10:31 pm


My condolences! Sad
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