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Heterometrus cf. longimanus "Palawan": Is it Parthenogenetic?

Discussion in 'Scorpions' started by sclerite, Jul 15, 2015.

  1. sclerite

    sclerite Arachnopeon

    There has been a lot of reports from hobbyists in the Philippines that the most common Heterometrus species in the local trade is parthenogenetic (Google search: longimanus parthenogenetic, Result: 1,850 in 0.44seconds) And the Heterometrus article in wikipedia cited two journal as reference on the line "Some specie[sic] are parthenogenic". Curious, I started this small project to document the life cycle of Heterometrus cf. longimanus "Palawan".

    So I purchased 10pcs of Palawan longimanus from a local breeder approximate birth date of June 20, 2015, he is not sure of the locality but claimed that the specimen is parthenogenetic since the parent specimen continually produces offsprings for every few months even though it is isolated. Which, most local keepers claim as well.

    I have been to Palawan due to work and although I have never found any specimen, it is a common tale of the locals that they can see a lot of specimen crossing the road during rainy season. Burrows are known to extend beyond reach and large number of individuals are commonly found together under the same rock or log.

    Here's the item list for the temporary enclosures
    5pcs microwave-safe container (around 3L volume) - $4.38
    4kg brown sand - $1.99
    1bag cocopeat - $0.44
    5kg potting soil - $1.11
    Total - $7.92 or Php360

    1 part potting soil
    1 part cocopeat
    1 part sand
    mixed with a screw driver
    and you will have something like this. I left one unmixed just to see what will they do with it.


    Average weight divided by 10, yet to get a gram scale though, so I guess I should get one before their next molt
    so each is approximately 0.17g

    Four containers has 1 each while the unmixed one has 6 in it.

    Will go look for some flat rocks or barks for them to hide on

    Room temperature: 25-30 degrees Celcius
    Container temperature: unmeasured
    Room humidity: unmeasured
    Container humidity: unmeasued
    Room airflow: Very good
    Container airflow: Very bad / Absent, unless when opened every other day.
    Condensation in container: 50-80% of top surface area
    Feeding: 10pcs B.lateralis few days old nymphs every week.
    Feeding on communal container: 50+ B.lateralis nymphs dump weekly.

    5pcs microwave-safe container (around 3L volume) - $4.38
    2kg of 4kg sand - $1.00
    1bag cocopeat - $0.44
    around 1/16 of 5kg potting soil - $0.07
    Total - $5.89 or Php267; $1.18 or Php54 each container

    Any suggestion is welcome.
  2. sclerite

    sclerite Arachnopeon


    Aug 6 to 10, 2015 - 3 out of 6 communal individuals has molted to 3i, weight is 0.3 grams
    Aug 10, 2015 - one isolated 2i has molted to 3i, weight is 0.3 grams
    Room temp - 30-32 celcius daytime, 25-27 night time

    Observations so far
    1. most are observed to venture out in the open in any time
    2. individuals in mixed substrate tends to dig shallow burrows but seems not to prefer staying on it
    3. the communal individuals prefer to burrow in unmixed cocopeat than in sand
    4. no signs of aggression or cannibalism yet
    5. individuals are more active in the communal set-up

    2i molt length - 16.98mm (average)
    -from tip of prosoma excluding chelicera to tip of metasoma near the anus
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2015
    • Like Like x 2
  3. brandontmyers

    brandontmyers Arachnoangel Old Timer

    This is a great project. I for one am happy someone has decided to do this. This whole talk about the parthenogenic specimens has been an ordeal. Good luck with your project and keep us updated!!
    • Like Like x 1
  4. sclerite

    sclerite Arachnopeon

    decided to number the containers so I can document it better

    Solo #1 - 3i, molted Aug 10, 2015
    Solo #2 - 3i, molted Aug 15, 2015
    Solo #3 - 2i
    Solo #4 - 2i

    Communal - 6pcs
    two new molts at around Aug 20, 2015
    5x 3i
    1x 2i

    I am observing more daytime activity than night time.
  5. Michiel

    Michiel Arachnoking Old Timer

    Only the instar 2 males give birth by parthenogenesis, but only when it is full moon... LOL

    Good project, be sure to number the enclosures and raise them to adulthood. Then wait till they give birth. So see you in 1,5-2 years!
    • Like Like x 2
  6. Scorpionluva

    Scorpionluva Arachnoangel Arachnosupporter

    LOL and here I thought it was only instar 9 males could do so under a full moon ;)
    Great project and would be nice to find out if in fact some of these species were truly Parthenogenetic
  7. Scorpling

    Scorpling Arachnopeon

    I have two H. Longimanus, unsure as to if they are the Palawan strain or from some other locale. It'll be interesting to see if these are indeed parthenogenic!
  8. sclerite

    sclerite Arachnopeon

    Dec. 28, 2015

    everyone is fat, just waiting for them to molt to 4i,
    feeding schedule is still once a week but now switched to dumping about 4-5 B.lateralis nymphs (1-1.5cm in length) per individual instead of the newly hatched ones.

    Solo #1 - 3i, molted Aug 10, 2015
    Solo #2 - 3i, molted Aug 15, 2015
    Solo #3 - 3i, molted Sep 02, 2015
    Solo #4 - 3i, molted Aug 25, 2015

    Communal - 6pcs
    6x 3i
    1x Aug 06, 2015
    2x Aug 10, 2015
    2x Aug 20, 2015
    1x undated, most probably early September

    weight is 0.3 grams (averaged), still yet to have a gram scale so this is definitely not accurate.

    -still observing more daytime activity than night time unless disturbed
    -mixed substrate seems to hold more moisture than the one that I didn't mixed
    -most have burrows, and the substrate mix seems to hold very well
    -the communal ones still didn't bothered to use the sandy part, they tend to just dig on or cover themselves with coco-peat or stay clumped in one corner with their claws out in the surface
    -didn't misted for about a month yet the substrate is holding moisture well
    -captures prey by waiting patiently on the entrance if their burrow
    -communal ones sometimes chases prey and mostly shares prey item if it is captured on the burrows entrance or wherever they stayed clumped together
    -the walls are covered with dirt

    Thanks everyone. I have been busy for a while that I totally forgot updating this thread although I have written the measurements and dates on the container lids whenever I check them out.

    Palawan was the primary source of the H. cf. longimanus in the Philippine trade, i have confirmed this from a local poacher and also how they do it. But still the source of my scorplings did not confirmed the locality so this whole project will only answer the question "is a certain species of Heterometrus in Philippine invertebrate trade parthenogenetic?" The "Palawan" part was my assumption because thats where most of the supply come from. I have came across some specimen of local hobbyist before that looks like H. petersii or H. laoticus or something that doesn't look like the mainstream H. longimanus that murders any of it's tank mate. I will need to look on some journals for that and I hope any of you guys can share some pdfs to me.

    Anyway, this project may just be to spark the interest of probably an arachnologist or biologist to do further research which we can then accept as fact since the method will be more precise and appropriate compare to this thread of measurements and observations.
  9. King Julian

    King Julian Arachnopeon

    so how is it going? im really curious about this
    • Agree Agree x 2
  10. Pipa

    Pipa Arachnoknight

    If they are parthenogenic, why are there males ?
  11. Sarkhan42

    Sarkhan42 Arachnolord Active Member

    Not all parthenogenic species are all female, males allow for genetic diversity but become more of an opportunistic thing in many cases.
  12. King Julian

    King Julian Arachnopeon

    there are lots of arrogant breeders in the philippines. claiming that H. longimanus in the philippines are all parthenogenic. they would humiliate you if you say otherwise. the invert world would definitely benefit from this scientific project of yours.
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Disagree Disagree x 1
  13. BobBarley

    BobBarley Arachnoprince Active Member

    @sclerite Any updates? Very interested in this.
  14. choggzz

    choggzz Arachnopeon

    Hi Mate, just want to ask if there's any update and progress with your project? really interested on your reasearch

    Thanks :)
    • Agree Agree x 1
  15. Abhorsen

    Abhorsen Arachnosquire

  16. Dr Veee

    Dr Veee Arachnopeon

    Any updates?
    • Agree Agree x 1
  17. weibkreux

    weibkreux Arachnoknight Active Member

    Is the project scrapped due to lack of funds? Just kidding. I'm really curious of the output.