Eur. J. Entomol. 109 (2): 139-146, 2012 | DOI: 10.14411/eje.2012.018

Pre- and post-parturial aspects of scorpion reproduction: a review

Michael R. WARBURG
Dept. of Biology, Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa 32000, Israel; e-mail: warburg@tx.technion.ac.il

Although scorpions are an ancient group their method of reproduction is rather complex and poorly studied. This review aims at clarifying some of the aspects of their reproduction that are important for understanding the reproductive ecology of other arthropods, including insects. The following aspects of scorpion reproduction are discussed and reviewed: mating, insemination, fertilization, gestation, parturition and birth. The onset of gestation and its duration are difficult to determine as both depend on the time of fertilization, for which there are no accurate estimates. There are only a few records of the time between birth and emergence of a larva from the maternal envelope in apoikogenic scorpions, which is important for a better understanding of ovoviviparity. All these questions are important as the answers will greatly enhance our understanding of the population ecology of scorpions in terms of the recruitment rates of cohorts and their chances of survival.

Keywords: Scorpiones, fertilization, insemination, gestation, parturition, birth

Received: August 19, 2011; Accepted: November 18, 2011; Published: April 5, 2012

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