A horrified family returned home from a holiday in Mexico to find a highly venomous scorpion had crawled into their suitcase.
The family, from Rochdale in Lancashire, discovered the creature two days after their return flight.
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Living up to its tough reputation, the scorpion survived a 10 hour journey spanning around 5,000 miles and a spin in the washing machine at least once.
John Greaves, Animal collection officer at the, said: "They think the little arachnid must have scampered into their clothes before being placed in the suitcase.
"They were really worried about him when they got in touch as the clothes he was inside had just been through the wash.
"They said he looked like he was dying, but he's obviously a tough little creature because he's survived his ordeal."
The orange scorpion measured just three inches long, but despite his modest size, it was thought to be highly venomous.
Rescuer John added: "If it's an adult then it's likely to be highly venomous due to its size and the conditions it would hunt in the wild.
"It would require a very potent venom to immobilise its prey."
The scorpion was taken to a specialist rescue centre for exotic animals.