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Question on feeding

Discussion in 'Tarantula Questions & Discussions' started by BlitzimX, May 19, 2019.

  1. BlitzimX

    BlitzimX Arachnopeon

    Very good day everyone,

    I currently am the owner of 2 female Tarantulas : A 1 inch Brachypelma smithi , and a 2 inches Chromatopelma cyaneopubescens . I've had them for 6 months now, and they are doing pretty well. I'm am however struggling a bit with the feeding part.

    I've read multiple topics on feeding, however i have come accross very few articles on how to source the food when you only have a few tarantulas. This, or since English isn't my first language, i don't know how to look ^^'. But each time they tell you what to feed, but not really what to do when you only have a few of them.

    Here is the thing: i buy my feeders from the petshop, where they only sell big quantities of meal worms or criquets. At first i tried criquets, but they mostly died off before i could use them all (2 per week isn't very efficent..).
    For the meal worms, i put them in the fridge, but still after a month or two they're not really fresh or healthy. I could start a mini meal worm breeding setup, but isn't it a bit overkill?

    What would you guys recommend? (appart from buying a lot more Ts :) ). For now i've fed my Ts only with Meal worms since it's the most practicle (and they come in various sizes), but i'm aware it's not the best food for them.
    • Like Like x 1
  2. moricollins

    moricollins Arachnoprince Old Timer

    Most tarantulas will eat pre killed prey, I used to feed my slings cricket legs or dead crickets (ones that I killed not ones that died on their own) all the time, rarely did they get live crickets

    Also growing a mealworm colony is quite easy and fun.
  3. Enrgy

    Enrgy Arachnosquire

    what do u mean by the mealworms weren't really fresh or healthy in the fridge? and what do u mean they're not the most healthy? they're quite healthy since they're nothing but fat lol. u cud start up a colony tho it's kinda fun :) i started one with like 5 slings
  4. VanessaS

    VanessaS Grammostola Groupie Arachnosupporter

    Meal worms are fine as far as nutrition goes - they are actually more filling that crickets and they often eat less when fed them. I have always fed my spiderlings, and even some smaller juveniles, with meal worms, because I prefer them to crickets overall.
    They will last many months in the bottom of the fridge where you would keep vegetables. Just add a bit of oatmeal in with them and don't forget to give them air holes.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  5. EtienneN

    EtienneN Arachnonovelist-musician-artist Arachnosupporter

    When I had one tarantula, I’d get four crickets at a time and feed two crickets every ten days. If the other two crickets didn’t make it to the next feeding day, I just went back to the pet store.
  6. Thekla

    Thekla Arachnoangel Active Member

    Are those sizes how big they're now? I'm struggling to believe you would know the sex of a 1" B. smithi. Did you buy them as confirmed females? :confused:

    There's no need to start breeding mealworms. ;) They really last for months on end in the fridge and they're absolutely fine to feed. But you need to give them time to "thaw" and get fed themselves. I always get them out of the fridge at least a day in advance and feed them some fresh carrots or apple slices, so they can get nutrients and water themselves before feeding them off to my Ts.
    • Agree Agree x 2
  7. FrDoc

    FrDoc Arachnobaron Active Member

    Ha! You sound like an executioner providing a last meal for the condemned. Oh, wait you are!
    • Funny Funny x 3
  8. BlitzimX

    BlitzimX Arachnopeon


    Both wre sold as females, yes. I think she may be a bit bigger than an inch now, i didn't really put a measuring tape over her :)

    As for the question why i thought they were not healthy after a bit of time in the fridge,i gave them some oat and air holes, but after a while i had quite a lot of dead inside the box. Is it normal?
    I'll try again to do that, plus giving them some stuff to eat the day before. Those 2 or 3 mealworms will feel lucky with all that food just for them :)
  9. Thekla

    Thekla Arachnoangel Active Member

    So, with the given sizes I assume you got both as slings half a year ago, right?
    If I'm right and you did get both of them as < 1" slings, I definitely wouldn't be sure about their sex. Do you have pictures from when you got them and how they look now? :)
  10. Drea

    Drea Arachnosquire

    I would be impressed if some one could figure sex on a 1” sling. Is the body just one inch or is the diagonal leg span?

    As for the food, I am all about getting more tarantulas! The worms in the fridge is the best way to go if you only have a few slings to feed. I like my Dubai roach colonies for slings too. They don’t smell, low maintenance, and always have a few sizes to choose from.
  11. Urzeitmensch

    Urzeitmensch Arachnosquire Active Member

    I had - still have to a degree - the same problem. For my first and biggest T. I use Zoophobas. They require minimal care and last a long time. For my slings I use crickets / micro-crickets but I am not satisfied with them and don't know what to do with all of them.

    However, I decided there is only one viable solution: MOAR Tarantulas
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  12. Killertut

    Killertut Arachnosquire Active Member

    you can just cut up zoophoba, that is what i do to feed my slings.
    • Helpful Helpful x 1
  13. Drea

    Drea Arachnosquire

    Ensure to smash the heads of these things because even when they are cut up, they can still bite and hurt your sling.
    • Helpful Helpful x 1
  14. Urzeitmensch

    Urzeitmensch Arachnosquire Active Member

    That is a great idea, I will try it. I am not sure if my juvenile L. Parachybana will take prekilled worm, though, I'll have to try.
  15. Ungoliant

    Ungoliant Malleus Aranearum Staff Member

    Most slings will readily scavenge on freshly killed prey. They may not go to it immediately, but if you leave them alone, they often will find it and feed. (If the prey looks smaller or has moved, the sling probably fed on it.)

    Older tarantulas may not be interested in pre-killed. However, a mealworm with a crushed head will still wiggle, and this should elicit a feeding response.

    Obligatory pics of tiny slings with big worms:

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  16. VanessaS

    VanessaS Grammostola Groupie Arachnosupporter

    I've done it for 3/4" dls and 1" dls. Other people have too, they are in the spermathecae gallery. It is possible with a microscope and Brachypelma are some of the easier ones to sex at the smaller sizes.
    I'm not saying that it has been done correctly in this case, but it is doable.
    Last edited: May 20, 2019
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  17. Drea

    Drea Arachnosquire

    I have already taken my kids legos and monopoly houses for water dishes, I am sure they won’t mind me borrowing their microscopes for giving this a shot. I am going to try this on a 1” Chilobrachys fimbriatus that just molted. :)
  18. cold blood

    cold blood Moderator Staff Member

    The only place I know that would sell sexed one inch slings, would be backwater. The one place to avoid like the plague.
    • Agree Agree x 2
  19. Mvtt70

    Mvtt70 Arachnobaron Active Member

    At that size crickets really are preferable, they'd probably eat 2 adult ones a week or 3 medium sized ones. If you buy mealworms you can honestly just put them in a container with a couple inches of coconut fiber with some carrots and lettuce on top, not even in a fridge and they'll stay alive for a long time.
  20. lazarus

    lazarus Arachnosquire

    Feed the mealworms for a day or two after you get them out of the fridge. You can give them some vegetables for hydration and oatmeal or dog/cat kibble

    You'll spend more time taking care of the beetles than your Ts. For now mealworms kept in the fridge is your best option, once your Ts grow you can switch to superworms, these won't pupate unless you separate them.