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ariusshadow
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PostSubject: Pet Store Emperor   10/6/2011, 5:29 pm

Hello, there. This is my first post on this forum. Let me start by saying that I do not own any invertebrates. But that's not to say that I don't want one. I just don't have the money/time/resources. I have a plethora of animals in my household already that suit me fine for now. But I would like to own one eventually.
I work in a pet store and have some questions about the female we have in our store. I'm noticing that finding information on scorpions is not nearly as easy as just typing the species into google and praying. Let me first say that the conditions in our store may or may not be altered by me. I'm just an associate. I may be able to change some things if they're something my immediate manager can take care of or supervise, but something like getting it a larger enclosure perhaps, is just not an option. Please try to bare with me on things like this. I signed up for this forum because I'd like to give the animal as much of a comfortable life as possible; as with all animals in our store. I care about the comfort of all the live creatures we sell. But there are limits as to what I can do.
As for the questions:
Specifications of our tank for her are that it's approximately a 7 gallon, in a perfect square. It's an odd number because I know it's more than 5 but less than 10. It comes on a 3-tank drawer that pulls out with the use of a key. There's multiple drawers stacked vertically. If need be, I can take pictures of her and her enclosure (and the whole tank stack, if anyone cares) the next time I go to work. We use reptibark as a substrate. Our lights are never able to be turned off. We have 2 bulbs for every reptile on 24/7. I have no way of knowing the exact specifications of the bulbs. In our scorpion's case, she appears to have one black light light bulb (the shape you'd put in a household lamp). The other is a white longer, fluorescent. We do not have a temperature gauge in her tank. But I can tell when I reach in to feed/water her, that it's about 70-75. I know already from previous research that this is somewhat cold. But I don't know if there's even a way to change the bulbs if one blows. So that may need to stay as is. We have a half-log type of house for her hide under, but she seems to prefer to stay in the back corner, in the open. She also has a wide, shallow water dish.
Now for my questions. (Sorry for typing too much! I've been on forums like this before and often get told that I don't give enough information! :/ ) First, we know she is NOT pregnant. Long before I began working there (4 weeks or so ago) we got her. She gave birth a few days after arrival. All the babies died. I assume this is because no one knew what to do. Our department is entirely dependent on people coming to work with the knowledge in-hand. It's not like we're trained on the animals we sell. However, she's showing the white stretches between her segments that I've read are usually meaning she's pregnant. She's the only scorpion in her tank; or in the store, for that matter. Is there another reason she'd be showing these segments? Also, the temperature- is it too cold, or is it 'not the best but manageable' for her? Also, should there be humidity in the tank? And is it normal for her to not move very often? She only seems to stay in one place. I don't recall ever seeing her walk, though I know she does move around. And lastly, she has multiple crickets in her tank. I know that they tend to be 'sneaky eaters' from other research. And because there's several associates in the back, we're trying to work out a good way to communicate feedings between each other. But should we be doing anything to encourage better eating habits (other than a schedule), and how often/many crickets should she be fed realistically? We have it in the books as 1-2 crickets every 3 days, but this isn't quite working, as she doesn't appear to be eating any. Any input on the conditions are appreciated. I can take pictures of whatever you need in order to give me a better diagnosis.
Sorry again for being quite the typer. Razz
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Streettrash
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/6/2011, 5:55 pm

Glad you found us!

First thing you should do is change the substrate to coconut fiber. Bark ships are no good for scorpions as they have delicate sensory organs on their belly. The substrate should be damp, but not wet, and DEFINITELY not dry. She should have a shallow water dish at all times.

At the temperatures you are keeping her she will not be active, and probably won't feed. Emperor scorpions need to be in the 80 - 90 F range. 85 seems to be good for an all day all night temperature. If you can change the light bulbs I recommend a red "nocturnal" light bulb. Scorpions are extremely photo sensitive and need a day/night cycle. All light all the time is very bad for them. Imagine trying to keep a bat healthy and feeding with light 24/7. The blacklight still emits visible light to them, and the UV from it is damaging to their health as well.

Feeding can happen once a week. Pick one person to feed it on a specified day. Three to four adult crickets will be plenty, and remove any uneaten prey items after a full day.

Ideally you would need substrate deep enough for her to burrow, but in a shop setting this is not usually possible. A half log hide will be fine, but a slab of cork bark would be better. Scorpions like to be in tight spaces to feel secure. Give her at least 2-3 inches of coco fiber and lay the cork bark flat so she can dig a small scrape out under it. If any one wants to look at her you can just pick up the bark.

Did I miss anything? Any other questions?
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Scorpion19981000
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/6/2011, 5:58 pm

This should answer any other questions.

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Streettrash
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/6/2011, 6:02 pm

That care sheet should probably be supplied to anyone who buy her from you, as well as a recommendation to join our community!

The care sheet outlines proper basic emperor care. In a shop setting that probably won't be possible, but anything leaning towards it will be a step in the right direction.
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ariusshadow
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/6/2011, 6:09 pm

Only thing you didn't mention is the white between her segments. The rest of what you mentioned was very informative, though. I will see tomorrow if there is a way we can change the bulb and see if there's anything my manager(s) will do to help that side of things. From what I can tell, the reptile wall system we have may be........ well, difficult.... to change a bulb, if it's at all possible. I will do my best to figure that out, though as it looks like it may be a problem to keep the current bulbs.
The lighting in our store is turned off at night, but as far as we know, the reptile system lights cannot be turned off. We're honestly still learning about a lot of things in the store- the store is only 6 months old. And I only started 4 weeks or so ago. We just found out about 2 weeks ago that we could turn off the lights in our fish tank systems, however these were made by a different company than our reptile/small animal systems. I tried to research the system itself online to see if the website might mention a way to turn off the lights or something, but there's no company name on the wall system, so finding such a thing is proving a challenge.
I'll be sure to keep the substrate damp once we change it. Misting would be a good way to do this, right? Should I make sure to avoid misting the scorpion herself? Because there's really no way to take her out unless she's being sold, plus I hear it's not recommended to handle them at all anyway, so I'd just kind of have to mist around her.
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ariusshadow
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/6/2011, 6:17 pm

Scorpion19981000 wrote:
This should answer any other questions.

Bookmarked the care sheet! Thanks for it! Smile
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Streettrash
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/6/2011, 6:19 pm

Oh yeah, the membrane. So it is on her sides that it is showing? If so that is normal. If it's showing between her tergites, or the segments on her back, pictures would help. She is definitely not gravid though if she just dropped a brood.

If changing the lights prove to be too difficult, a less elegant but simple solution would be to source a piece of red glass to cover them with. UV rays come from the coating on the bulb itself, and can not penetrate glass. Red light spectrum is not visible/as visible to scorpions and does not disrupt their nocturnal behaviors.

Temperature and humidity are my biggest concerns at this point. Misting can be effective, but pouring water directly onto the substrate is more effective due to saturation, and also less time consuming. Just pour a bit in each corner and watch it seep into the middle. if needed add a bit to the middle, but be sure you don't over saturate.
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ariusshadow
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/6/2011, 6:25 pm

It's showing from her sides last I looked, but I will keep an eye on her just in case. I like the idea of the red glass and may look into it if the lightbulbs seem too redonkulous to get to. I will definitely keep her humidity up now that I know I should. The tanks in our system tend to retain moisture quite well, so there's always been some kind of humidity in the tank. But not nearly as much as there should be.
Thank you so much for all your help! Smile I'm excited to try and make her enclosure as close to perfect as possible. I've grown somewhat attached to her since I've started working there. Razz
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Scorpion19981000
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/6/2011, 6:30 pm

ariusshadow wrote:
Scorpion19981000 wrote:
This should answer any other questions.

Bookmarked the care sheet! Thanks for it! Smile
No problem. Thats what this forum was made for.
welcome by the way.

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Streettrash
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/6/2011, 6:34 pm

Glad we could be of service, and that you've caught the "bug"
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/6/2011, 6:36 pm

Streettrash wrote:
Glad we could be of service, and that you've caught the "bug"

+1 Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/7/2011, 5:54 am

buy it and keep it properly.
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/7/2011, 6:23 am

=1 to everything everyone else has said looks like your problems have been well dealt with,,, welcome to the forum

the main thing would be sorting a= the substrate out you will have an extremely stressed scorpion if its on wood chip! 4-6" substrate at least Smile

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ariusshadow
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/11/2011, 6:11 pm

My department manager argues with you. He says he knows reptiles and intends to get their enclosures in order- but that she'd be more comfortable on.. Zilla Reptile Green Terrarium Liners.

And there's really no arguing it. :/ He's quite positive he's right.
As for buying it? No... I have enough animals at home. I could not properly care for it.
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Peloquin
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/11/2011, 6:59 pm

Show him this forum or print out this topic and explain that hes wrong. We have some of the top keepers out tgere on here who have put years and years of experience Into helping people with onformation. If he still Insists he's right, well at least you tried.
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Scorpion19981000
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/11/2011, 9:46 pm

ariusshadow wrote:
My department manager argues with you. He says he knows reptiles and intends to get their enclosures in order- but that she'd be more comfortable on.. Zilla Reptile Green Terrarium Liners.

And there's really no arguing it. :/ He's quite positive he's right.
As for buying it? No... I have enough animals at home. I could not properly care for it.

If he knows so much about reptiles, he should know that scorps are not reptiles. Show him this forum, show him arachnoboards, show him eggs with legs (New forum), show him online caresheets. I can understand not wanting it to burrow (peolple would never see it) but really? Terrarium Liners? That will hold no moisture. These scorps come from very moist places in Africa. Many people on here own scorpions that he probably doesn't know exist. He should at least learn the proper care, not ignore people have have more experience with scorpions.

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shining
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/11/2011, 10:51 pm

ta haaa haa haaa.he knows more than Street and us.
good points there Scorpion19981000 scorpions are definately not reptiles and love that moisture in the substrate.and kudos to Street for answering first and for covering so much with one post.

to tell you the truth i wouldnt keep anything on that astroturf stuff either.it sounds to me your d.m is just trying to be cheaper and to keep the scorp from burrowing by using that stuff.present smartguy all the info you have found on the information highway.if he still doesnt change i would buy the emp and care for it properly.i know you said you have a "plethora" of animals at your house already but one emp isnt gonna all of sudden make your life that much harder.if you can save just one,it makes a difference.
good luck on your mission.its a righteous one.
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/12/2011, 12:44 am

Mad Evil or Very Mad
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/12/2011, 2:11 am

He insists he knows reptiles???? A scorpion is not a reptile lol Laughing it amazes me how many pet shop people dont have a clue, i suppose cats live under water and hedghogs in trees too lol

At least you tried, most pet shops wont give them the right environment as it would mean potential buyers wouldnt see them, and it would mean digging it up all the time so its nothing to do with it being more comfortable at all, im sure its obvious to anyone that a creature whatever is may be would be more happy in closest a recreation to its natural environment as possible, not a crappy tank liner, there is just no tellin some people, i would buy it if it was me!!

At least you tried i guess

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Last edited by *~BEX~* on 10/12/2011, 7:55 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/12/2011, 7:47 am

ariusshadow wrote:
My department manager argues with you. He says he knows reptiles and intends to get their enclosures in order- but that she'd be more comfortable on.. Zilla Reptile Green Terrarium Liners.

And there's really no arguing it. :/ He's quite positive he's right.
As for buying it? No... I have enough animals at home. I could not properly care for it.
Are you sure you have no room for a 5 gal. tank? I would buy it if I were you. Really all you have to do is keep the tank moist, and feed it every other week. I spend less than 5 minutes a week on my emp tank.

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*~BEX~*
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/12/2011, 7:57 am

Scorpion19981000 wrote:

Are you sure you have no room for a 5 gal. tank? I would buy it if I were you. Really all you have to do is keep the tank moist, and feed it every other week. I spend less than 5 minutes a week on my emp tank.

+1 these have to be the easiest things to look after go on buy it save the poor lil guy Smile

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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/12/2011, 11:00 am

*~BEX~* wrote:
He insists he knows reptiles???? A scorpion is not a reptile lol Laughing it amazes me how many pet shop people dont have a clue, i suppose cats live under water and hedghogs in trees too lol

At least you tried, most pet shops wont give them the right environment as it would mean potential buyers wouldnt see them, and it would mean digging it up all the time so its nothing to do with it being more comfortable at all, im sure its obvious to anyone that a creature whatever is may be would be more happy in closest a recreation to its natural environment as possible, not a crappy tank liner, there is just no tellin some people, i would buy it if it was me!!

At least you tried i guess

My local petstore houses theirs communally in a very large tank, properly set up with numerous hides. When potential buyers want to see them, they simply lift one or more of the hides and buyers can see the "dogpile" of Imps underneath. All that's gonna happen with an improper setup is that the buyer will end up with a sick scorpion and probably be back within days asking for their money back because it died........ Rolling Eyes
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/12/2011, 11:16 am

sadening really isnt it i nearly complained at our local animal park as they have an emp (labelled emp but clearly a spinifer or something it has a jet black telson) and its on wood chip, drives me mad...they do it so visitors get to see then Sad think i got a pic somewhere....cant find it though

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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/12/2011, 11:28 am

Indeed Bex. Extremely saddening.
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PostSubject: Re: Pet Store Emperor   10/12/2011, 10:24 pm

Good way to display emperors at a pet store is this (I've given this advice to 2 pet stores and it works like a charm most of the time for both, they now do the heat trick for all scorpion species for display purposes);
Do the damp coconut fibre but only put in 1 inch deep
put the hide at the far end facing the customers
put the heat source as far as you can on the customers side, the farther the better as long as it still heats one side or keeps one wall warm

The reason for this is the emperor will not burrow, it has a cool place in case it gets too warm, and it will most of the time be out basking on the warm side, which surprise surprise, is right in front of the customer. It gets rid of the need to take them out to let the customer get a look at it, a good amount of the time that is. If you can get the heat source right against the wall you can even sometimes sex them Very Happy

ps, oh yea as the others said dont forget the water dish Wink
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