Scorpion attacks are increasing in Brazil. Experts warn

Scorpion attacks are increasing in Brazil.  Experts warn

Scorpion attacks are on the rise in Brazil. In fact, there are so many of them that scientists are talking about records. The worst situation is in one of the popular cities.

São Paulo, Brazil's richest and most populous state, topped the infamous ranking last year. It was here that a record number of 43,817 attacks occurred by scorpions, which found an ideal place to breed in large cities. Scientists don't have good news. They believe that people should get used to it, because there will be more “pests of the future” in cities due to deepening climate change.

Scorpions attack with great force

“Once we managed to catch over 40 scorpions in the same place,” Gisele Dias, a veterinarian and coordinator for the supervision of accidents involving poisonous animals at the Ministry of Health in São Paulo, told EFE.

In the state of São Paulo, which has a population of about 46 million and a population similar to that of countries such as Argentina and Spain, there have not been so many scorpion stings reported since 1988, the year they began to be counted. Since 2017, there has been an increasing tendency in the region to have accidents involving venomous animals, not only scorpions.

“Plague of the Future”

Gladyston Costa of the Butantan Science and Research Institute believes that the increase in attacks by yellow scorpions, the most common species in the city, is linked to a trait that allows it “to breed alone, without the need for another scorpion.” Therefore, in his opinion, this is what the “plague of the future” will look like.

For this reason, the São Paulo administration is carrying out activities such as inspection and capture of these animals in districts that have been classified as at risk of occurrence and attacks. At the same time, awareness campaigns are promoted.

A bar employee, who preferred to remain anonymous, approached a team searching for scorpions in the city and said he had found members of the species in the establishment “several times.” After a brief inspection, scientists discovered that the animals may have entered the pub from under the door or through pipes without mesh, which is one of the most common ways for animals to enter the interior.

Although they were originally found in forested areas of the neighboring state of Minas Gerais, Costa points out that the scorpions eventually arrived in large cities “carried in by trucks of vegetables, firewood and construction materials.” And they stayed. In urbanized areas, they found a source of shelter, mainly in pipes and sewage channels, and food, as they feed mainly on cockroaches.

Climate change is contributing to the problem because “as temperatures rise, the availability of food for animals increases.”

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