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Help help help!

Discussion in 'Tarantula Questions & Discussions' started by Flower, Jun 24, 2009.

  1. Flower

    Flower Arachnoknight

    I am freaking out.

    First, one of my pinktoes was acting weird today. His abdomen is small and his mouth is CAKED with dry white/off-white junk. No mistaking it, it's there, and something is clearly wrong. The other two he lives with are seemingly fine. All three shed this month.

    It gets better. My OBT was dead next to his shed. I noticed today he was in the same position he had been in for three days and I pulled him out. He had wet around his mouth and was NOT in a death curl. It smelled weird also. However, 1) I think he might have died a few days ago, 2) I accidentally dropped his body in the water dish, which may have led to the wetness. It was clear, very wet looking, and only around his mouth, which was what I found weird about it. He also had a bit of white goo around one of his back legs. I can't decide if this means he had a bad molt, or if something else is wrong. The sickness of my pink toe is freaking me out pretty badly.

    Are nematodes the ONLY thing that causes that white around the mouth? I have all my T's in one room, how can I protect them all?
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2009
  2. Flower

    Flower Arachnoknight

    I would like to add that the white stuff around the mouth is DRY, not wet and goopy, and I have not noticed extensive webbing and other things commonly contributed to nematodes. My camera is really bad at getting non-blurry shots, or I would post a pic.

    *NEVERMIND. My pinktoe is now in a death curl spewing white/offwhite goop from it's mouth. Do the other two housed with him even have a chance? What if I lose my whole collection? I can't believe this. What do I do? I am in a state of pure panic. :(
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2009
  3. Kris-wIth-a-K

    Kris-wIth-a-K Arachnoprince Arachnosupporter

    Put him in ISO - Deli cup damp paper towels in a dark area with a water dish.

    I would clean the tank out well and change the substrate. What kind do you use?
  4. GailC

    GailC Arachnoprince Old Timer

    You should also seperate the two that were housed him them and keep both away from your other T's just in case. Sorry for your loss, I hope the others are ok.
  5. Flower

    Flower Arachnoknight

    I did, and I put the sick guy in the freezer also...I just couldn't watch him spit up anymore, it was really depressing.
  6. Harlock

    Harlock Arachnosquire

    You might want to consider putting the body in a thing of rubbing alcohol. If it is nematodes, this might cause them to be suspended in the solution, and you will be able to see them as stringy goo.
    Just a suggestion based on some other threads I've seen here.
    Hope your other two tarantulas are fine.
  7. Flower

    Flower Arachnoknight

    I hope so too. I have two who were with him and 40 others in the same room. :(
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2009
  8. Flower

    Flower Arachnoknight

    That do ya'll think the odds are the other two are sick too?
  9. Sathane

    Sathane Arachnoking

    I'd read the discussion threads on here concerning nematodes and see if the listed symptoms match your Ts. I believe there was something about the smell in those threads as well.

    Keep any Ts that may be showing signs well away from any other Ts. Also, be sure to clean, disinfect, and sterilize any tools used in cage maintenance as these can transfer organisms into other enclosures.

    If you have any leftover crickets kicking around, dispose of them. Infected crickets are one of the most common ways of getting nematodes (aside from them transferring from a newly acquired specimen that was infected) so I'd consider getting your feeders elsewhere until the source of the nematodes can be confirmed.
  10. Exo

    Exo Arachnoprince

    Is there an outbreak of nematodes or something? :?

    Seems like everyone is getting them.
  11. Sathane

    Sathane Arachnoking

    Huh? Where? This seems like it has a good possibility of being an actual case of nematodes whereas the mass hysteria from a few months ago was started when someone asked some questions about it so everyone thought they had them and went into panic mode.

    I'm still convinced that whole ordeal was a ploy from the substrate manufacturers since I'm sure they made record breaking sales during those few weeks.

    Anyhow, if you think you might have a nematode infection, check the threads on them. Like this one:


  12. Exo

    Exo Arachnoprince

    How often do petstore crickets have nematodes?
  13. That why some people only buy CB T's.If you buy WC T's sooner or later you
    will run into this problem.
  14. Sathane

    Sathane Arachnoking

    I've never experienced a nematode infection personally and haven't heard of any around my area so I guess I'm fortunate.

    I'm not sure how common it is to get infected crickets but if I walk into a pet store and see cages in disarray or very dirty, I walk right out. If that's how they keep their display tanks, I'd hate to see how they keep the feeder tanks in the back room.

    Not to say that a clean pet shop can't have infected feeders either...

    This is all just another reason why it's best to breed your own feeders.

  15. Sathane

    Sathane Arachnoking

    Very true. You can't be lucky forever...

  16. Flower

    Flower Arachnoknight

    I got my T from a local store -- I like the store a lot but the distributor who distributes to ALL of the local pet stores around here is sketchy, and not only were both T's from him and WC, but I've lost another one from him. Only recently have I realized how sketchy things are!

    My little pinktoe was not too old, maybe 2 inches, and I don't know if he ever ate in my care or if the other two ate all of the food (they still eat like cows) I am almost sure he was WC. I have had him for three months at the most, and he shed about a month ago.

    My T probably got them in the care of the distributor, I have seen phorid flies and mites in his enclosures and stuff when he brings his stock to the stores, and I always avoid the suspect T's.

    I get my crickets from a fishing store, and the facility is super clean and the crickets apear to be healthy.

    I DID keep the pinktoe cage across the room from my other T's, do you think that might be enough to lessen that chances that my other T's will get sick?
  17. Malhavoc's

    Malhavoc's Arachnoking Old Timer

    My city has recently used nematodes to try and get rid of termites. their totaly fun stuff! (not) I've so far been lucky not one infection.

    however. to reduce the risk of cross contamination to your other t's I would do the following (as already suggested)

    ISO any with symptoms.
    thoroughly wash all cleaning/maintance utensils you may use. after using them..
    replace substrates of any you are worried about..
    and good luck!
  18. BrynWilliams

    BrynWilliams Arachnoprince

    the physical barrier of distance is always a good thing to avoid cross infection so yes, anything that's been further away from those 'whatevertheyares' will have a better shot.

    Some photos would be amazingly useful if you could get some

  19. Sathane

    Sathane Arachnoking

    If you use the same tools on all cages during maintenance there is a possibility if cross contaminating other specimens as well. Distance is good but means little if you are physically transferring parasites with your tweezers or other tools.

  20. Flower

    Flower Arachnoknight

    The good news is I usually do my Pinktoe cage last, and I usually just get in there with my hands and pick up cricket debris, so nothing should be contaminated.

    The bad news is I touch other stuff before I was my hands sometimes -- who knows what clothes and furniture have been touched after messing with my pinktoes.