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Should I clean the full tank or continue spot cleaning for awhile?

Discussion in 'Tarantula Questions & Discussions' started by Spoods, Sep 14, 2019.

  1. Spoods

    Spoods Arachnopeon

    Recently my tarantula, a juvenile GBB, has been getting some poop on her backside and legs while she wanders around her enclosure. She doesn't seem harried or agitated by it, and most of the poop has taken the form of dried powder on the top of her hide and under her stick, so when she walks near them it gets on her. I don't want to destroy her lovely webs, but I also don't know if it's a good idea to let that stay there for any longer. Do you think just going in and maybe wiping it down with some paper towels while she's in another corner would be suitable, or should I do a full change this weekend? I just wanna make sure she won't get sick or whatever from walking near it so often. This is probably a dumb question, but I'd rather ask than not, lol.
  2. I never change substrate or do a full re-housing for a situation like this. I only spot-clean if convenient (easily done).

    GBBs are kept dry -- so poop should be dry and innoculous.

    And unless poop on a T was preventing the ability to eat, web spinning or blocking book lungs, I'd leave it alone.
    And heaven knows a GBB won't appreciate a bath -- not even a small spray of water on them is appreciated!!!

    Is GBB in permanent home or is it small enough that it will eventually be rehoused in permanent home?

    Wait and see for now. My best advice.

    [assuming juvie means juvie and not a sling, then some of what I wrote would be different....]
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  3. viper69

    viper69 ArachnoGod Old Timer

    Can’t see the set up.

    Never heard of T having poop on them as you describe- who knows- sounds like your Tank is dirty as all hell. Or your T doesn’t have much space to move.

    Many Ts are tidy animals a lot like leopard geckos.

    I’d clean it out.
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    DARTH ARACHNUS Arachnopeon Arachnosupporter

    All my T's prune and keep themselves incredibly clean I have never seen any of mine with poop on them to second Viper69 has it got enough room?
    Personally I would look at it's current housing is it big enough?
    Either way I would remove it do a full clean or full rehouse if the conditions are right the T will clean its self up.
  5. Andrew Clayton

    Andrew Clayton Arachnobaron Active Member

    Pics of you’re entire setup and problem would help
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  6. EtienneN

    EtienneN Arachnonovelist-musician-artist Arachnosupporter

    I mean there’s a spot in the back of my P. metallica cage where she poops but she’ll actually clean at least a little of it herself in that she moves dirty substrate towards the water dish. Maybe since your Ts poop is on top of her hide and there’s so much webbing down she can’t clean it up.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  7. Spoods

    Spoods Arachnopeon

    To those concerned she doesn't have enough room - she's still very small, so I'm worried giving her the larger tank I have would make her nervous and stressed. I'll upload a pic of the tank and the substance that's on the hide. I can't imagine the tank being so dirty after only two months; I changed it in July fully and besides needing to take out a bolus or two currently, I can't see how it would have gotten so bad. She does groom herself, and the substance isn't fully covering her. Sometimes a tiny spot gets on her leg, but it's gone like a few hours later. I'm doing everything in my power to keep her as well as possible, so hopefully I haven't just made a stupid mistake.

    IMG_5099.JPG IMG_5098.JPG Here's some pics. Let me know if a bigger view is needed.

    I always keep her substrate dry, aside from the tiny bit that sometimes falls out of her water dish, so I really can't imagine it's mold, unless I'm missing something.

    IMG_5100.JPG Here's a full view of the tank with my hand for extra measurement. I have a bigger tank if that's really recommended.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 15, 2019
  8. EtienneN

    EtienneN Arachnonovelist-musician-artist Arachnosupporter

    It might be mould, which 99.9% of the time is harmless, just because the white stuff we’re talking about looks so fuzzy. I don’t think it would really stick well to a tarantula, and even then, the T should be able to get it off when grooming with no ill effects.
  9. Spoods

    Spoods Arachnopeon

    Oh God, really? Shit, I was hoping it wouldn't be mold. I do recall being told that most of it is harmless, but I guess I still worry about that sort of thing. The reason I assumed it was poop is because on another thread I showed what the stuff on her leg looked like, and someone said it looked like dried excrement, so I thought the entire mound of stuff must be that, despite it not,,,looking like poop. I apologize for my ignorance about a lot of things; I'm still new to the hobby and I'm doing my best, but sometimes I get a little confused.
  10. Arachnophoric

    Arachnophoric Arachnodemon Active Member


    If it is mold (which it appears to be looking at where it's formed looks wet), it's pretty much harmless and if you let those spots dry out will die out on its own. Or you can take a small spoon and scoop out the moldy bit of substrate, if you're really concerned. However, I don't think a full rehouse would be necessary.

    I would like to mention that your hydrometer/thermometer stick on in the back of the tank is unnecessary, and that particular form is useless - those cheap plastic dial ones are inaccurate as all hell, and contrary to the average care sheet you'll find on google, your T doesn't need specific humidity values, only consistent access to a full water dish (which as I can see she does). Room temperature is fine for these guys; if you're comfortable, they probably are too. Not that you have to take it out if you really want it in there, but I wouldn't stress over specific numbers. Your enclosure is pretty deep and offers potential for quite the drop for a mainly terrestrial T. If she climbs to the top and falls, she could possibly get hurt (or worst case scenario, even die). If you want to err on the side of safety, you could add more substrate in there to reduce the risk of your T taking a bad fall. A good rule of thumb for the safety zone is to keep the distance from the top of the tank to the substrate about 1.5x the legspan of your T.
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  11. EtienneN

    EtienneN Arachnonovelist-musician-artist Arachnosupporter

    I got on my iPad and zoomed in on the photo and guess what? It’s definitely poop!! So nothing to worry about or even really clean right away!
  12. Spoods

    Spoods Arachnopeon

    Thanks for the helpful response, it means a lot. I'm just confounded on what exactly that is, haha.

    Ahh yeah, the only reason I put that little thermometer in there is because I wanted to make sure the temperature never got way out of hand; I have air conditioning when it gets hot so she's never really in extreme conditions, I just wanted to be extra thorough (even if they are unreliable, lol). Thank you for mentioning the substrate; when I first made the enclosure I had a ton more in there, but a friend told me her T-keeping friend suggested less, so I went with a third of what I originally had. I guess I've just gotten a lot of conflicting info, but I agree that she should have more cushioning. She doesn't climb often, however I want to be safe, so next time I change the tank I'll add more. Thank you again!

    Oh, well that's good! I can't believe this tiny baby produced so much poop already, but I guess she's been busy!! That makes me feel a little better. I just gotta remind myself to go in and take some out when she's in the other areas, because I hate seeing her have to tromp through it.
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 15, 2019
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  13. Teal

    Teal Arachnoemperor Old Timer

    Literally nothing to worry about here, be it poop, mold, or temperature.

    Poop happens
    Mold happens.
    Temperatures between 60-90°F and a short time below or above that are perfectly fine.

    A GBB is a really simple, hardy T... you're making things way harder on yourself than necessary to keep your spood happy and healthy :)
    • Agree Agree x 1
  14. I think tank looks fine. Perhaps mine has a poopy spot also -- no way to tell since mine's so webbed up I can't see much!
    As I originally said, I only spot clean if area is easily accessible. And since GBBs are kept dry (and yours isn't a sling), I'd rule out mould... or dry tank out if yours is being kept damp.
  15. Andrew Clayton

    Andrew Clayton Arachnobaron Active Member

    Sorry for butting in but you only need to change tanks when you’re T is too big for its enclosure or there is a very bad outbreak of mould or fungus, it’s not like a hamster cage that you clean out every couple of weeks I have an LP that’s been in the same enclose and same substrate for the past 2 years so there is no reason for you to change out you’re tank unless it’s a rehouse
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  16. Spoods

    Spoods Arachnopeon

    Haha, you're probably right!! This is my first T and despite having read up extensively and telling myself not to worry so much, somehow my anxious ature always rears its head. xD Thanks to you and everyone else for reassuring me. I adore Spooderman (Spoody for short) with my whole heart, so when any little thing happens that may look bad I'm like "OOO:" I gotta learn to be more chill lmao.
  17. Teal

    Teal Arachnoemperor Old Timer

    You're welcome :) If you ask me, it's always better to check if you think something is wrong. Sometimes (okay, a lot of times lol), it is going to be something like this where we tell you it's all okay... but how can you be sure if you don't ask?!
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