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How to find and catch a tarantula

Discussion in 'Tarantula Questions & Discussions' started by Brando, Feb 7, 2006.

  1. Brando

    Brando Arachnoknight

    Well i am having trouble actually finding and catching my own tarantula, my grandparents own a ranch in central Texas and am pretty sure there are Aphonopelma anax. But i have no idea where to look to find their burrows.... Anyone have any suggestions?
  2. Aubrey Sidwell

    Aubrey Sidwell Arachnobaron Old Timer

    This time of year they are probably deep underground and have their holes plugged. You would probably never find one that way. Wait a few months and you might have better luck.
  3. Jason Vaughn

    Jason Vaughn Arachnosquire Old Timer

    well wait a little longer till spring hits
    then try going out at night with a flash light
    and then you may need to find burrows
    their maybe webing out side of it.... skin shed....
    if you do find one
    you can ither try to dig it up
    flood it..witch can hur or kill the t
    or maybe coax it out by useing a stick and tapping the inside of
    the burrow gooooooooooooooood luk:D
  4. Brando

    Brando Arachnoknight

    Well yeah i will wait, but when i did go searching which was late summer early fall when it was still warm out i didn't see any burrows, would they be more likely to make burrows in the middle of a field or under some trees?
  5. GAD

    GAD Arachnosquire Old Timer

    I think u should leave'em be go buy you a CB T....Just a thought
  6. Jason Vaughn

    Jason Vaughn Arachnosquire Old Timer

    cb is a good thought :liar:...lol (no it realy is a good thought)
    but if that does not
    suit you then only
    take 1 or 2 ts from
    each area & do not
    take a gravid female ( will have a large abdomen)
    & do not take a mature
    male. look for juvs
    or non gravid females
    :D :D :D :D :D :D :D
  7. Tony

    Tony Arachno-pragmatarian Old Timer

    Hurt it? By digging, maybe, flooding probably not..I've seen em pop to the burrow mouth and stay underwater for fear of coming out into the open. Shading the burrow with your body to darken the area helps (Thanks Stan Schultz) .
    Hey if Spider Bob Breene can cut a T trying to cut of her escape, anyone can ;)
  8. aliceinwl

    aliceinwl Arachnosquire Old Timer

    Here in California, I've had the most luck finding tarantulas in hilly grassland areas. They've been in full sun away from trees, often in areas where shallow or rocky soils and slope result in stunted plants (the grass near burrow sites is shorter and less dense). Once you find your first one, note the habitat, elevation, slope aspect, soils etc. and look for similar areas. I've happened upon most of mine by chance wandering the hillsides in mid to late summer. The late afternoon sun, seems to be the best for catching the glint of silk.

    The burrows I've found have a very distinctive appearence. Very round, with thick webbing coating the walls and a very thin curtain of silk over the mouth. If the silk, is not appressed to the walls or funnels out at the mouth, at least around here, it's not a T (this becomes important if you've gone on a long hike and only brought one water bottle).

    The guys around here are very non aggressive. I used a squirt of water to get them to move to the burrow mouth and then I just slip one of my fingers behind them and push / scoop them out.

    To find good potential hunting spots, make notes of locations where you have seen wandering males, plan hikes in these areas and keep an eye on the ground. If it's not male season yet, look for tarantula hawks (Pepsis spp.); this is what keyed me into one location I hadn't previously considered looking for T's in.

    Only collect what you need / have the ability to care for. I usually stop at two (but I did take three from one site where they are really thick). I also don't collect for others or give my sites away. If someone wants to catch a tarantula, they can do their own legwork ;)

  9. Randy

    Randy Arachnolord Old Timer


    :D just a thought as well! no offence yeh!
  10. MRL

    MRL Arachnolord Old Timer

    Let the guy have his fun. :)
  11. Bloodletting

    Bloodletting Arachnobaron

    You need a paper bag, a stick and a flashlight.

    1. Wait til dark and creep out into the woods.

    2. Place the flashlight on the ground shining into the opening of the paper bag.

    3. Tap the side of your bag with your stick.

    4. Make clucking sounds.

    Eventually, all sorts of tarantulas will come running, just wait til they run into your bag and snatch them up.
  12. Czalz

    Czalz Arachnoknight Old Timer

    I think that only works with the "S. nipes" species.;)
  13. Siienceofdeath

    Siienceofdeath Arachnosquire Old Timer

    Nice, I think the nice men in the white suits with butterfly nets would come running before a T did. :}
  14. amberlecemu

    amberlecemu Arachnopeon

  15. Try to find a place with a rocky outcrop and start kicking over large flat rocks. Wait until April and you will have a better chance of finding them.
  16. Pennywise

    Pennywise Arachnolord Old Timer

    You might have to travel

    west of Fort Worth. There are plenty of them near Strawn/Mingus Tex.
    area. Late summer is the best time. You can cup them with a deli
    container near roads, they aren't very fast.
  17. Brando

    Brando Arachnoknight

    I appreciate the serious posts, the others....i don't......where do you think the first tarantula's came from, did they just end up in a cage on someone's shelf?

    Thanks to those people who actually cared to post intelligent words of advise.

    And i will catch tarantulas when i can whether some of you agree with it or not. Not all of us are rich or want to risk bad shipping.
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2006
    • Like Like x 1
  18. stubby8th

    stubby8th Arachnoknight Old Timer

    Do you know what species (of Aphonopelma) is out there mexican8s?

    Thought I'd offer up my hunt thread from last September:

    Last edited: Feb 9, 2006