Hoffmannius spinigerus, commonly known as the Devil scorpion, are very common and widely distributed in Phoenix Arizona. Phoenix residents often mistake Devil Scorpions for their Arizona cousins the Bark scorpion.
Devil Scorpions are a medium-sized scorpion with large adult females reaching nearly 70 mm. It can be differentiated from our Arizona Bark Scorpion (Centruroides sculpturatus) by the brownish-tan stripes on the back of its tail along the keels or ridges; the tail is typically thicker than the hands and pedipalps, both of which are quite slender in the bark scorpions. It may be found on sandy soil in a variety of habitats, from desert floors to rocky hillside. Typically, it is found under any convenient surface object, including boxes, shoes, etc., where it builds a short burrow for protection. It seeks the most humid areas it can find usually in and around water sources.Devil Scorpions are predators and feed on the insects found around most Phoenix area homes such as crickets, roaches etc. Devil Scorpions will feed on other scorpions including the Arizona Bark Scorpion.
Control methods for Devil Scorpions consist of establishing a continuous barrier around your home with special attention to harborage areas nearby. Monthly service is important to maintain the exterior barrier. Interior service and/or night service may be necessary for heavy infestations.