Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Chelicerata
Class: Arachnida
Order: Scorpiones
Family: Vaejovidae

Chihuahuan Slendertailed Scorpion
Paruroctonus gracilior

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Paruroctonus gracilior

Paruroctonus gracilior. Photograph by Kari McWest.

Paruroctonus gracilior "pallidus"

Paruroctonus gracilior "pallidus". Photograph by Kari McWest.


Physical Characteristics

Yellowish brown to greenish brown, often seen with dirt clinging to the upper (dorsal) surface. The front of the carapace is convex with triangle-shaped markings. Pincers are very robust and keeled in adults. Tail segments are elongate and the telson is very slender. Adults range from 35–45 mm in length.


Paruroctonus gracilior prefers consolidated sand/gravel soils. It is often found in creosotebush scrublands. An obligate burrower, it often digs its burrow at the base of a shrub. It is sometimes found under rocks.

Geographic Range

This species is found in the Mexican states of Chihuahua, Aguascalientes, and Coahuila; in the U.S.: Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas.


Paruroctonus gracilior, like other vaejovids, eats spiders and insects.


The sting is considered mild.



Jackman, J. A. 1997. A field guide to spiders and scorpions of Texas. Gulf Press, Houston.

Polis, G. A. 1990. The biology of scorpions. Stanford University Press, Stanford, CA.

Web Resources

Scorpions of the Chihuahuan Desert

Scorpions of Texas


Aaron Bodor, June 2006.

A.H. Harris, Last Update: 5 Jul 2006.