Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada
Clickable Guide
Moths Butterflies Flies Caterpillars Flies Dragonflies Flies Mantids Cockroaches Bees and Wasps Walkingsticks Earwigs Ants Termites Hoppers and Kin Hoppers and Kin Beetles True Bugs Fleas Grasshoppers and Kin Ticks Spiders Scorpions Centipedes Millipedes


TaxonomyBrowse
Info
ImagesLinksBooksData

Order Solifugae - Windscorpions

New Spider in Mesa Arizona? AZ Solpugid what is this? What is this spider? Sacramento HOLOTYPE: Mesal Chelicera - Eremobates corpink - male Solifugae from South Texas Windscorpion Wind Scorpion : Close up
Classification
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Chelicerata (Chelicerates)
Class Arachnida (Arachnids)
Order Solifugae (Windscorpions)
Other Common Names
Solifugids, Solifuges.
the names Camel Spider, Wind Scorpion, Sun Spider are sometimes used but are misleading, as the creatures are not closely related to either scorpions or spiders
Pronunciation
Solifugae (SOLE-ee-FEW-jee), solifuge (SOLE-ee-fuge), solpugid (sol-PEW-jid)
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
The order is currently under revision. If you would like to contribute to the research, please consult(1)
Explanation of Names
Latin sol 'sun' + fug 'flee' (Solifugae are nocturnal and if found in daylight will seek the nearest shade)
Numbers
ca. 200 spp. in 12 genera of 2 families in NA(2); >1000 spp. in 140 genera of 12 families worldwide(1)
Great many spp. are known from either males or females only, so associating genders will probably lead to combining some putative species in the future.
Size
so. African spp. can reach 70 mm (up to 160 mm with legs included (Biodiversity Explorer); most of our spp. reach about 25 mm (~1")
Identification
Eight-legged, somewhat scorpion-like, but lacking the tail. Elongated pedipalps look like an extra set of legs, but are used as sensory organs, similar to antennae.


Identification to species extremely difficult.
Keys to genera in(2)
Range
Habitat
Warm arid places, mostly deserts and sandy areas, but some found in forests and grasslands
Food
Voracious predators, feed on invertebrates and small vertebrates; scavenge on dead creatures and hunt live prey
Remarks
They lack venom, but the strong jaws may inflict a sharp bite in self-defense if handled. The most common species are quite small and can hardly be felt except for a slight "pinch". Larger members (e.g., Eremorhax spp.) have been known to draw blood. Immediately disinfect the bite.
"Solifugae are the subject of many urban legends and exaggerations about their size, speed, behavior, appetite, and lethality." (Wikipedia)
Internet References
Snope.com Debunking of Camel Spider myths, some general information