Can Scorpions Fly?

ScorpionflyScorpions are scary, but if they fly around, that will make them even scarier; but can they fly? The answer will surprise you.

Scorpions cannot fly. However, there is a species called scorpion flies that are capable of flying. These species are harmless. They belong to the Mecoptera family order, closely related to fleas. They don’t sting humans; they just fly around.

Brief Info About Scorpion Fly

Scorpion flies are flies that have four pairs of legs. These flies are known for their mating ritual, which is different from other insects. 

The female only accepts the male who can provide maximum gifts. The male of these species has enlarged genitals which look like the scorpion stinger. That’s why people often confuse them with scorpions. Their size varies from 0.1 inches to 1.4 inches. They don’t sting even though the male has stinger-looking genitals.

Difference Between Scorpion And Scorpion Fly


Scorpion Fly

1. Scorpions have venom, and they can be fatal. 1. Scorpion fly don’t have venom, and they are not fatal to humans.
2. It has a very tough exoskeleton and is resistant to heat and minor damages. 2. They don’t have an exoskeleton that can protect them from severe heat or climate changes, nor are they immune to damage.
3. Scorpions are predatory arachnids. They have eight legs, two pincers, And one stinger. They can inject venom from their stinger. 3. Scorpion flies are not arachnids; instead, they have closely related to fleas. They have six legs, three body parts and one antenna. The male scorpion fly genitalia looks like a scorpion stinger; however, it cannot sting.
4. Scorpion gives birth to babies. 4. Scorpion flies lay eggs.
5. Scorpion doesn’t have wings, and they cannot fly. 5. Scorpion flies have wings, and they can fly.

As you can see, they are entirely different and have evolved very differently. Scorpion flies are no threat to humans, but scorpions are. Scorpion’s venom can create various reactions within a human body, and some can be fatal.  

Forensics uses the presence of scorpion fly to identify new dead human bodies as they only come to the bodies as long as it is fresh.

They also help to spot dead bodies as these scorpion flies can be spotted from a distance.

A Lot Of Scorpion Fly Can Be A Mess

Although they are harmless to humans, they can be a nuisance if you enter their territory. They will roam around like weird-looking flies. These flies feed on fresh dead bodies and don’t attack humans when they are alive. The male’s stinger-looking genitals are useless when they feed. The genitals are strictly for mating and can’t be used for stinging. They are not scorpions. They look like them.

Having A Lot Of Them In A Particular Place Is An Indication Of Fresh Death

These flies are only attracted to the freshly dead bodies of animals and humans. When those bodies start rotting, they fly away. They come in number and feed there as long as the body is fresh. They are more flea-like rather than scorpion.

They don’t have venom, nor do they sting. However, their presence can be annoying as they come in number like flies. They can contaminate food and can spread diseases. Usually, you cannot see them indoors; they only feed on dead insects, plants and fresh human bodies. However, the larvae are predators because they actively hunt for food. 

Scorpion Flies Are Important For The Environment

Hanging FlyScorpions flies are scavengers, which means they play a vital role in the ecosystem and help get rid of dead carcasses quicker. 

Typically they are found outside your house, but if you go to a picnic, some of them might come in contact with your food. They avoid fresh fruit, but if they are in numbers, then it can happen, so avoid eating near them as they can also spread diseases if they somehow manage to land on your food. They have big pincers in the mouth part, but they don’t use them to bite humans.

Their appearance protects them from the predator. The male genitalia looks like a scorpion, and the way they keep the genitalia makes it look like they have a stinger and appear venomous. These characteristics protect them against various predators. Their genitalia is only used to attract other mates. 

Small insects sometimes become their prey like they are scavengers. They feed on almost everything, especially dead ones. However, there are no scavengers that are true scavengers. Instead, they adapt and eat anything smaller.

They are also known as hanging flies. This is because they hang upside down from tree branches and wait for prey.

Scorpion flies can also feed on plants when they don’t get a carcass; however, compared to other fleas, they are much less harmful to your crops. 

They can be seen on grasslands, woodlands, gardens etc. If you have ever been around farms, you probably noticed them. They help the soil to fertilize faster by decomposing the matter more quickly. If you run through the field, you’ll see many of them flying. Typically they avoid being exposed as they can become prey. The only sure way to spot them is to visit their habitat and see if there is a carcass.

What To Do If Scorpion Flies Feed On Your Crops?

Scorpion Fly Feeding On PlantIf the scorpion flies feed on your crops, you can do a few things to stop them.

Throw Dead Insects Near Them

All you need to do is throw some dead insects near them, and they will fly away from your plants. They only eat plants when there is no carcass available. So preventing them is no big deal. They are good for the environment, so you don’t need insecticides or pesticides to get rid of them. 

Cover Your Crops

If you want to avoid any pests, then you need to cover your plants with a floating row cover. This cover will stop all kinds of pests from getting on your plants. In addition, this plant cover is made of polypropylene fabric resistant to water and cold. These properties make the floating row cover one of the best ways to protect your crops.


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