Ecological modeling and distribution analysis of digger scorpions: Odontobuthus doriae, Odonthubutus bidentatus (Scorpiones: Buthidae) and Scorpio maurus (Scorpiones: Scorpionidae) in Iran using the maximum entropy method

  • Ali Haghani
  • Mehdi KhoobdelEmail author
  • Rouhullah Dehghani
  • Amir Adibzadeh
  • Hossein Sobati
  • Mansour Aliabadian
Original Research Paper


Prediction models are essential for the potential geographic distribution of scorpions, prevention of scorpion stings and diverse applications in conservation biology. There is limited information about habitat suitability and the factors affecting the distribution of Iranian digger scorpions. This study was undertaken to model the distribution of three types of digger scorpion in Iran, Odontobuthus doriae Thorell, Odonthubutus bidentatus Lourenco (Scorpiones: Buthidae) and Scorpio maurus Pocockin (Scorpiones: Scorpionidae), and investigate the factors affecting its distribution using the maximum entropy method. A total of 20 environmental and climate variables were used for modeling and evaluation of the ecological niche. The similarities and differences between the ecological overlap of the digger scorpions were evaluated using comparative environmental niche model (ENM Tools software). The results showed that the main factors for habitat suitability of O. doriae were soil type, mean temperature of the wettest quarter and slope. The variables for S. maurus were soil type, precipitation of the coldest quarter and slope. Annual temperature range, mean temperature of the driest quarter and land use had the greatest influence on the distribution of O. bidentatus. The ecological niches for O. doriae and O. bidentatus overlapped. The niche of these species differed from the niche of S. maurus. This approach could be helpful for the prediction of the potential distribution of three digger scorpion species and this model can be an effective for the promotion of health.


Digger scorpion Odontobuthus doriae Odonthubutus bidentatus Scorpio maurus MaxEnt Iran 



This study was financially supported by the Baqiyatallah University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran with the grant number BMSU/HRC/96-05-001609. We would like to thank from the “Clinical Research Development Center of Baqiyatallah hospital” for their kindly cooperation. The authors have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© The Japanese Society of Applied Entomology and Zoology 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ali Haghani
    • 1
  • Mehdi Khoobdel
    • 1
    Email author
  • Rouhullah Dehghani
    • 2
  • Amir Adibzadeh
    • 1
  • Hossein Sobati
    • 1
  • Mansour Aliabadian
    • 3
  1. 1.Health Research Center, Lifestyle InstituteBaqiyatallah University of Medical SciencesTehranIran
  2. 2.Department of Environment HealthKashan University of Medical SciencesKashanIran
  3. 3.Department of Biology, Faculty of SciencesFerdowsi University of MashhadMashhadIran

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