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Need Escape-Proof GBB Enclosure Ideas

Discussion in 'Vivariums and Terrariums' started by Lil Paws, Oct 30, 2017.

  1. Lil Paws

    Lil Paws Arachnosquire

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    I have a 1.5" GBB who is being kept in a modified baseball display case. She was a bit of a pet rock when she first came here a month ago and is still a little "spoiled" when it comes to feeding. She prefers prey brought directly to her and only live crickets—not boring roaches or mealworms. They aren't exciting enough.

    So I fed her yesterday and discovered with her new molt that she suddenly developed the ability to teleport out of her enclosure. This happened when I was trying to retrieve an unwanted cricket. Luckily, she paused after getting loose—just long enough I could catch her in a cup. I'm going to be extra careful from here on out, but I have a feeling she will increase speed and boldness with each molt—which may be a bit intimidating as she gains size.

    When I rehouse her to a bigger enclosure in a couple months, what can I build to prevent any more mad dashes for freedom?
     
  2. Nightshady

    Nightshady Dislike Harvester Arachnosupporter

    Any idea how it got out? Did it just make a break for it when the habitat was open? Did it squeeze through a vent hole that is too big? A pic of the habitat would probably be helpful to figure out the problem.
     
  3. miss moxie

    miss moxie Arachnoprince

    Unfortunately, flighty Ts are just a hazard of the hobby. You cannot avoid them 100% because you cannot keep your tarantula in a sealed environment. You'll need to open it to feed, do maintenance, rehouse. Even an adult in their last enclosure will need fed and spot cleaned. Some people put bottle tops with screw on lids into their enclosure so they can unscrew the lid, drop the feeder in. But this isn't always an option.

    Tarantulas are fast, and they're incredibly talented at moving when they decide to move. You can reduce the chances by opening the enclosure only when necessary, and rehousing them into something large so they'll feel more comfortable. A skittish T in an enclosure that is too small for them is a bad combo. An insecure tarantula will bolt if they feel they're in danger.

    But the best thing you can do is to just get your skills up. You caught her, and that's what matters. Even people who've been doing this for a long time have Ts bolt on them. I just had an adult female Poecilotheria striata bolt while getting her unboxed. It was over in less than two minutes, getting her into a catch cup and then back into her home. Experience builds instincts, reflexes, and calm nerves when you find yourself in a cruddy situation like this.
     
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  4. Lil Paws

    Lil Paws Arachnosquire

    The lid at the top was open while I was trying to get the cricket out. She used to be super calm and has never bolted before, but I should have realized that could change. I guess she finally decided to behave like a GBB.
     
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  5. Lil Paws

    Lil Paws Arachnosquire

    Thank you! I really appreciate that. I knew CBB weren't the best beginner Ts because of their amazing speed (and I am such a newbie), but—wow. She's about a 1.5" in 6" softball display case so I'll probably move her sometime after she molts one or two more times. In the meantime, I will up my game and be a lot more careful.

    I'm pretty sure she didn't like me rummaging in her home to pull out the cricket. The cricket was so *fast* and small—very hard to catch with fingers or tweezers. Maybe I'll put crickets in the fridge before I feed them to her to slow them down (I hate pulling off legs), and if I need to remove it I use a spoon to scoop it up.

    Ironically, about an hour or so after I posted this she started stalking about like she was hungry again. I dropped in the cricket, and she even chased it. I guess she's getting used to her new longer legs.
     
  6. Nightshady

    Nightshady Dislike Harvester Arachnosupporter

    The mad dash for freedom was it? Haha, well I guess that happen sometimes. I have a GBB sling myself. One thing I might suggest (I am a total noob here but this could be helpful) is to make sure you have a hide for your sling. Mine has webbed up a crook of a fake tree and made a little lair. It seems very content to stay there when I open the cage. Perhaps you're missing that in your setup?
     
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  7. Lil Paws

    Lil Paws Arachnosquire

    Her current enclosure.
     

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  8. Nightshady

    Nightshady Dislike Harvester Arachnosupporter

    Hmmm, probably best if someone more experienced guides you on your habitat setup. I wouldn't personally have filled it so full of substrate. That thing could be over that short wall in the blink of an eye. I realize that you don't want a T to die from falling, but there is probably a happy medium between substrate to the top where they can escape in an instant and a huge fall resulting in death.
     
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  9. Garth Vader

    Garth Vader Arachnohipster Arachnosupporter

    I would give your GBB sling more space, less substrate and some more webbing points. It isn't the same species but here's a pic of my enclosure for my Haplopelma sp Colombia large - same size as yours and also a skittish and extremely fast spider. This enclosure has been working well. At first he tried a few escapes but is now webbed up in a corner with the leaves and seems pretty content. Still, I don't leave the lid off with this one and keep a catch cup nearby.
    Edited to add- I am a newer hobbyist as well so looking forward to experienced keepers to chime in here.
    1020171602.jpg
     
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  10. The Snark

    The Snark هرج و مرج مهندس Old Timer

    Were wiser words ever spoken?
     
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  11. Sergic

    Sergic Arachnosquire

    I keep my GBB with much less substrate than my other terrestrials, and I think a lot of other keepers do the same. The additional distance between substrate and wall might help reduce the probability of an escape. As the spider adds more webbing, it may also construct a web hide that it will retreat to instead of bolting out of the enclosure.

    While your sling is too small for one currently, I keep my GBB in a critter keeper. I like that it has a small hatch in the lid that I can open to drop feeders in a pick out boluses.
     
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  12. Lil Paws

    Lil Paws Arachnosquire

    Thank you so much! I really appreciate all of your help. So she may feel a bit cramped now? That makes a lot of sense. She's out of her web again today. I'm trying to figure out if she's antsy or hungry again (her abdomen still looks smallish compared to her legs after molting).

    If I move substrate her web will come apart as it's along the bottom. Is it worth it to do sooner or should I wait?

    Or would it be even better to simply move her into something bigger with more "decor"? I have a couple of tall acrylic shoe boxes set aside for rehousing. They are 7.25" x 12.75" x 9". I just need to drill some holes in one, and it is ready. Would those too big or could they be comfortable for her if I added lots of anchor points and places to hide in?
     
  13. Lil Paws

    Lil Paws Arachnosquire

    Here we go. The GBB has been feeding well and then some so I went ahead and re-did the setup. She is hiding behind the big cork as she is justifiably annoyed (and probably a bit scared) with me moving her and redecorating her home. I did feel a bit guilty ruining her web but how she will have more space to do more. With time, I hope she comes to enjoy it. She has more vertical space, hiding spots, and anchor points. I'll probably be relocating her to something bigger after her next molt.
     

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  14. JavaJacketOC

    JavaJacketOC Arachnosquire Arachnosupporter

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    Agree with some of the posts above...less substrate, a little more floor space and should resolve your issue. If you're disrupting the web when you open it now, that's probably why it's taking off.
     
  15. viper69

    viper69 ArachnoGod Old Timer

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    There's too much sub in there. By too much, I mean it doesn't give you enough height in case it leaves, as you noticed. I've never had a GBB escape, however I put them into containers with enough depth. There's no science to it, pick what you are willing to deal with.
     
  16. Lil Paws

    Lil Paws Arachnosquire

    Thank you. I updated the setup a while ago. Did either of you see my last post (it was from Thursday)? There is a new photo in it. The GBB seemed very happy until today (she's on the cage floor in a little partial pit she dug). I'm trying to figure that out.
     
  17. JavaJacketOC

    JavaJacketOC Arachnosquire Arachnosupporter

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    Just saw it...looks fine. GBB's are big webbers so it's probably just starting that process. I wouldn't worry about it too much.

    You can try just dampening the area of the tank where you want it to burrow. GBB's like a dry enclosure but a slightly damp tunnel...you might be able to coax it towards burrowing in the damp area.
     
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  18. TreeHugger

    TreeHugger Arachnopeon

    That's awesome! She'll forgive you once she settles in and sees how cool her new digs are.

    By the way, I love her name! :)
     
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