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Shop worker stung by scorpion as he opened box of bananas

The man was working at a Farmfoods store in Stonehaven when he opened the box from Colombia.

Scorpion: Billy Clark said the sting was like a 'more intense' bee sting.
Gary Cruden

A shop worker is recovering at home after being stung by a scorpion while opening a box of bananas at Farmfoods.

Billy Clark, 48, of Redcloak Crescent, was working at the Farmfoods store on Barclay Street in Stonehaven at the time of the incident.

After opening the box, which had been imported from Colombia, Mr Clark felt a sharp sting in his right little finger.

He said: “My boss thought I was joking when I said it was a scorpion."

“At first I thought it was a centipede because I just saw a long thing going under the cardboard and when I moved it there was a scorpion.

“When I saw it I thought ‘oh my god, is it a deadly one’. It was quite sore - like a bee sting but more intense.”

Undeterred by the incident Mr Clark captured the three inch arachnid before being taken by ambulance to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary.

He said: “I took it to the hospital with me. I used a pair of grippers and put it in an empty coffee jar. I thought if I went to hospital and said I’d been stung by a scorpion they’d think ‘he’s on something’.

“When I got to hospital they were all excited – they said it was something new and it had never happened before.

“An hour after being admitted to hospital I was feeling tired and feeling sick but they did blood tests and a heart trace and kept an eye on me every hour.”

Staff at the hospital named the animal after Colombian pop singer Shakira.

Mr Clark said he would like to be reunited with the scorpion to keep as a memento.

The creature is now under the care of the Scottish SPCA and is likely to be sent to a specialist in an effort to identify specie.

SSPCA chief inspector John Carle said, "In 26 years of service this is the first time I've dealt with a scorpion, although we are often called to supermarkets to rescue spiders found in boxes of fruit.

"Anyone who does find an exotic creature should contain it and contact our Animal Helpline for assistance on 03000 999 999."

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