Animal Stories - Rose-haired Tarantula
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The Chilean Rose Tarantula has been an important spider for more than thirty years!
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As this is likely to be the spider people purchase if they wish for a handleable pet, here's a few tips. Firstly, by far the easiest way to pick up a Tarantula is to put your open palm in front of it and carefully coral it onto your hand with a paintbrush. Take it slowly, place your hand in the tank in front of the spider (but at a distance) and gauge it's reaction, if it looks aggressive, give up now. If the spider reacts calmly or not at all it's likely safe to gently prod it and let it walk onto your hand. Make sure your movements are slow and that you do not breathe on the spider - sudden movements and the sudden gust of breath can frighten the spider, either causing a bite or a scared spider that jumps and falls from your hand (anything over 1-2 feet drop can prove easily fatal). Do not attempt to handle your spider if it recently shed as it will be very fragile until the new carapace hardens and also may be more defensive than usual as a result.
Just remember to take it slowly and carefully and your spider should be fine with being handled.
My Chile Rose molted the other day, normally a very good feeder, I woke up to find my beloved spider suddenly with about 16 legs and two abdomens. Needless to say I sat and watched this amazing display, something truly incredible about it. She's a good 5" legspan now (tip front-left, to tip rear-right) and incredibly docile and friendly. If one places a hand near the tank, she has been known to climb the side and sit on the offered hand.
Don't expect all Chile Rose to be docile however. A good friend of mine made that mistake with a recent purchase of his and quickly found himself on the receiving end of a bite. There was little provocation, his hand in the tank and the spider darted forward and bit.
Makes me even more appreciative of how lovely mine is. =)
These spiders are fantastic, easy to handle and easy to keep. Mine have all seemed to go through periods of refusing to eat for months at a time. I currently have one male, Ares, and a female, Shelob. (along with a female Green bottle blue T.) They live in 10 gallon tanks side by side and offer me hours of enjoyment. I love teaching people that spiders are not to be feared and not all spiders are as aggressive as they have been led to believe. I will continue to keep these amazing animals for many years to come.
My son wanted a tarantula for his 7th birthday. I wasn't ready for one then. I bought him one 2weeks before christmas. He was so happy, we now handle it together. My undecisive feeling for spiders has never been scared, but now I'm cool with them. The Chilean rosa hair we now call McKala is a part of our family and we love her. McKala has bit my son once but it wasn't severe. When I found out why McKala bit him, he told me he was trying to play paddicakes with her. OOO I was laughing so hard. She didn't punture the his skin but it was quite the experiance.
My boyfriend bought my tarantula also. He mistakenly thought I liked spiders. Which I WAS terrified of them, and I finally got brave enough to hold this gentle spider and let her walk on my hands. I named her Charlotte. I was brave enough to even take the spider out of the cage by myself. From what I've seen they're very patient and calm.
That is a hilarious story because the EXACT SAME THING just happened to me. My boyfriend also bought my tarantula! and last night I saw her on her back and I thought she was dying! I started to cry and I was saying "god please don't let her die"!And this morning I looked inside her cage and saw 2 tarantulas, freaky.
After months of me saying I wanted a taranchula, my boyfriend finally broke down and bought me one. I just wish someone would have mentioned the molting process when we bought our spidey. I came home to find spidey laying on his back and I instantly started crying. But after flipping him back over was reassured he was still alive, only to find what looked like TWO spiders in his cage. I freaked out and really started crying. All this to come to find out it just shed. haha, last night was one h**l of an experience.
Answer for Jess 10-8-08 : I hope your tarantula's appetite is back to normal. My "spikey" had gone through almost the same behavior. She stopped molting, stopped eating and became very weak. I even remember seeing little white insect critters all over her body (like fleas on a dog). She eventually passed away. We only had her for 2 years (I really don't know how old she was). Just like you, I had no clue what was going on. Before she died, I gave her crickets hoping she'd eat . . . but the crickets were just jumping all over her and she was not responding at all, she avoided them, matter of fact. My best guess : probably your spider and mine ate a cricket in the past that had ingested some form of pesticide. And that cricket somehow we bought from the pet store or perhaps the cricket ingested the pesticide we sprayed in our own homes. I really do wish that your pet is better now. I felt terribly helpless for my Spikey.
I love my rose haired tarantula. I named her Pride, she's completely webbed in her liitle den thingy. I think she's either molting or building an egg sac. She's beautiful, and loves Crickets and meal worms. I tried feeding her a pinky, but she didn't eat it. I got my Rose Haired Tarantula from Pet Supermrket in Venice, Florida.
I'm writing in hope to get some good advice from people with experience on Rose haired tarantulas. I've had Rosy for almost two years now. 4 months ago I moved her into a larger tank (10 gallon) and made her the ideal enclosure (warm, deep bedding, many places to hide and climb, moist) and she hasn't eaten since. She hasn't molted in a 1 and 1/2 years. I moved her back into her original enclosure where she had been eating and molting and handle her much more (like I had in the beginning) and she still hasn't turned around. ANY ADVICE?!?! She seems to run away from anything I try to feed her like crickets and grasshoppers. I've tried provoking with tongs too and still nothing. She will die soon if I cannot get her too eat.