5-speed listening (Scorpions - Level 3)

Scorpions sting more than 500 people in Egypt



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More than 500 people have been stung by scorpions in Aswan, Egypt. Heavy rain forced hundreds of the eight-legged creatures into the streets and into people's homes earlier this week. Many of the people who were stung had to go to hospital. Doctors gave them anti-venom injections. The people were able to go home after having the jab. Those stung by the scorpions had symptoms including severe pain, fever, vomiting and diarrhoea. The Health Ministry has put hospitals on alert just in case more people are stung. A weather expert asked farmers in the area to be careful, especially when planting crops. In addition, he asked people to be careful of snakes, which were also seen after the rain.

People in Aswan are worried because the scorpions in their town are very dangerous. They are Arabian fat-tailed scorpions. Their nickname is "man-killer". The Al Jazeera news agency says they are among the most dangerous scorpions in the world. The venom in their sting is very poisonous and can kill a human within an hour. However, fat-tailed scorpions live in the mountains and rarely come into contact with humans. The weather expert advised people to wear proper footwear when they went outside to avoid getting bitten. He said the scorpion numbers would go down after the rainwater dried up. Less than one per cent of the world's scorpion species are deadly.

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