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 Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?

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PostSubject: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   2/12/2008, 7:02 pm

I've seen this Question a hundred times and without in depth research I would conclude that UV is harmful, for the simple fact that UV is damaging to humans.

But that is not good enough, I did some research and put together this post to discuss the topic of UV and scorps. Feel free to add your insight and observations. Below is mine.

********************************************

From Wiki-pedia I came up with a break down of the electromagnetic spectrum...

UV is divided into 3 ranges Near (400 nm - 200 nm), Far (200 nm - 10 nm), and Extreme (31 nm - 1 nm) Ultraviolet. Then subdivided, between Near and Far you have UVA (400 nm - 320 nm), UVB (320 nm - 280 nm) & UVC (Below 280 nm).

UVA is a longwave UV and typically produced by the 'black light' lightbulb (party bulb) and is generally considered the safest to humans.

UVB and UVC can cause DNA damage. UVA is capable of causing damage to collagen fibers.

Below are excerpt scans from "The Biology of Scorpion" edited by Gary A Polis, which detail how intricate and delicate the scorpions eyes are, just one feature of the scorpion exposed to UV.




So if overexposure to UVA can cause sunburn, cell damage, in a human it can cause cell damage in a scorpion. What wavelength is your UV bulb or flashlight? I know I reflected my UV flashlight into my eyes and had a mild eye burn, from less than a second of exposure.

So just be mindful when using blacklight on your scorps...
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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   2/12/2008, 7:10 pm

I agree with your tought but there is a slight question that came to mind just now. How is it that roaches and scorpion would be able to survive high intensities of radiation such a nuclear bomb and not be able to handle uv light? Is it just because it's long use that would cause any problems.
-Eddy
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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   2/12/2008, 7:14 pm

Radiation exposure, though survivable by these guys, does not necessarily mean cellularly unaltered mutated DNA. That is my thought on it, I'm gonna hit Google to see if any thing quotable comes up.
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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   2/12/2008, 7:25 pm

From my knowledge of biochemistry, it's a wavelength of 253.7 nanometers that causes thymine dimers (damage to DNA). Based on this, I would not suspect that a regular UV flashlight has the capacity to cause significant harm to any organism other than mild discomfort.

The blacklight flashlight I use has peak emmision of 390 nanometers, which is barely into the UV spectrum at all.

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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   2/12/2008, 9:09 pm

Roaches died when hit with 100,000 rads of radiactivity on mythbusters
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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   2/13/2008, 9:05 pm

Thaedion wrote:
Radiation exposure, though survivable by these guys, does not necessarily mean cellularly unaltered mutated DNA. That is my thought on it, I'm gonna hit Google to see if any thing quotable comes up.

As copied from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cockroach

It is popularly suggested that cockroaches will "inherit the earth" if humanity destroys itself in a nuclear war. Cockroaches do indeed have a much higher radiation resistance than vertebrates, with the lethal dose perhaps 6 to 15 times that for humans. However, they are not exceptionally radiation-resistant compared to other insects, such as the fruit fly . The MythBusters of Discovery Channel had tested this popular belief in an episode aired on January 30, 2008, and had confirmed that fruit flies do indeed have a higher resistance to radiation than cockroaches.

The cockroach's ability to withstand radiation better than human beings can be explained in terms of the cell cycle. Cells are more vulnerable to effects of radiation when they are dividing. A cockroach's cells divide only once when in its molting cycle, which at most happens weekly in a juvenile roach. The cells of the cockroach take roughly 48 hours to complete a molting cycle, which would give time enough for radiation to affect it but not all cockroaches would be molting at the same time. This would mean some would be unaffected by the initial radiation and thus survive, at least until the fallout arrived.
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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   2/14/2008, 3:43 am

i will find my Jan Ove Rien quote again then Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   2/14/2008, 5:07 pm

From the research kindly provided. I would have to concur the "you just shouldn't do it" idea of keeping continuous UV light on your inverts.
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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   2/14/2008, 7:52 pm

Continuous, I agree -- but I see no harm in the occasional display for visitors or checking on scorps nocturnally.

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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   3/13/2008, 12:44 am

I had a hard time explaining this to someone on the Venomlist
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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   3/13/2008, 2:18 am

Which part?

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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   3/13/2008, 11:07 am

IHeartMantids wrote:
Which part?

how blacklight is bad, bad for any living thing. it's ok for a picture here and there and for a hunting tool but it breaks down everything, even plastics.
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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   3/13/2008, 11:42 am

That's why shallow UV is so great -- virtually harmless, but you still get the fluorescent effect.

Deep UV is the scary stuff. I did an environmental design competition and we were using deep UV to destroy bacteria -- we had to get quartz pipes so it wouldn't break them down or get absorbed, and we always had to keep the lamp covered to avoid giving ourselves skin cancer.

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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   3/13/2008, 11:47 am

IHeartMantids wrote:
That's why shallow UV is so great -- virtually harmless, but you still get the fluorescent effect.

Deep UV is the scary stuff. I did an environmental design competition and we were using deep UV to destroy bacteria -- we had to get quartz pipes so it wouldn't break them down or get absorbed, and we always had to keep the lamp covered to avoid giving ourselves skin cancer.

we use long wave as a form of sterilization in the body mod industry, but still short wave is harmful to anything. a good way to explain it is that it cuts down the half life of plastics and if it does that then what does it do to organic matter. that's the thing with engineers, they design stuff (usually on napkins at the pub) but it's us technicians that make it work and turn the theory into reality.
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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   5/22/2008, 12:03 am

Speaking on blacklights i found a heat bulb that is not UVA/UVB but still gives the scorp and nice green colour. It's called a night glow and it is made by exo-terra. So if you want to run heat and make your scorp look cool then get one of these, they are fantastic.


Last edited by spikexspiegel on 5/22/2008, 12:58 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   5/22/2008, 12:14 am

Still have UV light. I know which bulbs your talking about.
-Eddy
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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   5/22/2008, 12:21 am

If that's the case, it would be bad to have on for prolonged duration.

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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   5/22/2008, 12:47 am

"we have to ask ourselves 'is our children learning?'."

uv = no bueno for extended periods of time...sun is out for roughly 12hrs a day and sun produces uv rays: 2+2=4
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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   5/22/2008, 12:56 am

I was in contact with one of their support reps. They assured me that no Uv came from those lamps. The bulb works on the same basis as infrared. But if you feel uncomfortable using one it's understandable. But yeah all exo-terra lighting that produce Uv will say so right on the box. Unless they have given me miss information. They don't produce the same effect as a blacklight but it is pretty similar.

Answer from Exo-Terra-"Remember, this bulb is simulating moonlight, and that does not comprise of any UV rays to start with"
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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   5/22/2008, 1:11 am

UV= SCORPIONS GLOW....
Moonlight Bulb= Scorpions glow.
Go ahead and use it if you feel you are right. I'm only talking through experiance.
-Eddy
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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   5/22/2008, 1:19 am

I wouldn't use it unless i knew it didn't produce UV. Considering the statement came from the people that make the product i may have to go with them on this one. I hope i haven't upset you in some way. But hey if i'm wrong and my scorpion dies in the next week or so i will have a company to talk to and an apology to give. If you have an example of problems with the night glo light i would be glad to accept the fact that i am wrong, if i am.
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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   5/22/2008, 8:47 am

Moonlight is sunlight reflected off the moon's surface, ergo, it contains some UV. Anything short of a green filter that makes a scorpion appear green is going to contain some UV. It probably won't be as detrimental as a regular blacklight, and it shouldn't be a problem if your scorp has a good hide, but I'd still hesitate about using it fulltime.

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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   5/22/2008, 3:07 pm

Yes i do agree that the moon reflects UV and the customer service rep may just not know that the moon also reflects UV, but he still assured me that the light did not contain UV. The lamp itself has a reflective material on it aswell as the bulb itself is a blue filtered glass. Those things in combination may be the reason for the glow of my scorpion under this light. This also isn't the first UV sensative animal i have in my keeping i also have several UV sensative tarantula's and a whole wack of Burrower frogs that so far have not had any difficulty with this light. I use it as my night cycle light for all my exotic pets, no problems so far.
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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   5/22/2008, 5:36 pm

Have you ever seen a scorpion out in REAL moonlight? I have. They dont glow. That light produces more UV than actual moonlight. I dont think your scorpion will die but a few experiments me and a few others (SECRET) have been doing show that it will have negative effects for the scorp. I cant talk much about this but all I can say is I gave you a warning. In the end you can do whatever you want. I dont know what kind of scorp you keep but if it's P. imp remember that they are on the CITES list and people who dont care for them properly are going to end up killing this species in the future.
-Eddy
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PostSubject: Re: Is UV light harmful to Scorpions?   5/22/2008, 9:47 pm

Alright so after doing some more research into the night glo bulbs and talking with someone who apparently actually knows the product, instead of some service rep it turns out the bulbs actually do produce UV at about 387. I have discontinued use of the bulb and apologize if anyone took my word on it. But i couldn't just believe what i heard, i had to find out from research on the bulbs for myself so thank you for steering me in the direction of finding the info.
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