A student has spoken of her shock after she found a surprise stowaway in her suitcase following a trip to South Africa.
Megan Royle had returned to her home in Gillingham, Kent, after flying back from her mother’s wedding when she discovered the olive thick tail scorpion, a highly venomous insect the size of her fingernail.
The 20-year-old said: “I was rushing to unpack as I was going out to meet friends then this tiny scorpion hopped out of the suitcase and scuttled across the bed.
“I didn’t clock straight away what it was. I thought to myself: ‘That can’t be a scorpion’.”
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Ms Royle said she called her mother for advice, and added: “Mum told me not to worry, it’s only the little ones that are dangerous – and this one was tiny so then I was freaking out even more.”
Ms Royle said she then contacted the RSPCA which collected the scorpion and identified it as a species that requires a Dangerous Wild Animal licence to be kept in the UK.
Animal collection officer Brian Milligan went to collect the scorpion. He said: “The scorpion was small and sandy-coloured. It seemed to be well so I took it straight to our specialist exotics centre in Brighton.”