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Tarantula Intelligence level? IQ vs True spiders

Discussion in 'Tarantula Questions & Discussions' started by Ultum4Spiderz, Aug 5, 2012.

  1. Swoop

    Swoop Arachnosquire

    That's the whole purpose of this thread though, tarantula intelligence compared to true spider intelligence.

    Your last assertion is pretty vague and would seem to contradict your claim that bitey-er T's are less intelligent. OW's have fewer defense mechanisms/tools at their disposal.
  2. The wolf

    The wolf Arachnobaron Active Member

    I think that The use of tools as marker for intelligence by default must be a learned behaviour whearas the use of silk is an instinct
  3. Thomas Loomis

    Thomas Loomis Arachnopeon

    I would say that Myglamorphs are likely a bit more intelligent. My opinion is more supposition than fact. I would love someone to back this up for me.

    As to biting something way larger than you, unless you are discussing a very small number of Myglamorphs or Aranemorphs is probably not so bright. This is quite ironic given how unmatched size pairs fail when breeding spiders. They seem to understand the concept of bigger and smaller. When given the choice to fight, flow, or flee, fight is not usually a best option.

    I would also like to start off the ranking by saying jumpers are likely number 1.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  4. atraxrobustus

    atraxrobustus Arachnosquire

    Not quite- its not a question of having less tools in that respect- its more the question of which tool is better to use- running Vs. using the bite or the threat of the bite to accomplish what one seeks to accomplish. And like I said, when you compare infra-orders they don't stand on the same ground so the comparison is double-standard at best.
  5. Swoop

    Swoop Arachnosquire

    When a NW runs its back is defended by urticating hairs and its bite is less effective.

    When an OW runs its back is not defended and its bite is highly effective.

    This means that running is relatively much more dangerous for an OW, but you're claiming they're less intelligent because they don't run away as frequently as NW's.

    It's not that you're wrong, it's that your premises don't logically lead to your conclusion.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  6. Thomas Loomis

    Thomas Loomis Arachnopeon

    My point was that sometimes an animal is not a predator. In these cases, attack is unnecessary. It exposes the attacker to risk. There is very little chance of reward.

    When dealing with predators, OW have no urticating hairs as you said. They must bite in hopes of surviving.
    • Disagree Disagree x 1
  7. Whitelightning777

    Whitelightning777 Arachno-heretic Arachnosupporter

    Aggression doesn't always equal stupidity. The puma is by far more intelligent then the deer and rabbits that it feeds on.

    Some tarantulas do seem to be more intelligent then others. My P striata certainly has more efficient hunting algorithms then my other spiders. The greater physical speed probably indicates faster neural processing at some level.

    I've observed wolf spiders and even briefly captured 3 of them for another reason. They showed no capacity to learn or change in tactics when confronted with the same stimulation.

    A good example is a spider trying over and over again to run up a surface to slick for it to use.

    They are robots, just living ones. Like any other computer or robot, humans can learn to interact with them successfully.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  8. Rob1985

    Rob1985 This user has no status. Old Timer

    We've had this discussion a lot over the years. I am firm believer that they are are nothing more than instinctual creatures that react based upon various environmental factors and triggers.
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  9. Dennis Nedry

    Dennis Nedry Arachnobaron Active Member

    Best example of a spider learning is in the genus Portia, watch them hunt and you can clearly see them visualising the area around them looking for a vantage point to make hunting prey in tricky spots easier.

    Tarantulas have never really been observed learning on that kind of level at all, but they can learn to a very small extent through association. That's the most basic type of learning we see and most of not all animals can learn by association. Aside from that there's developing behaviours over generations through instinct but that's not really learning in the sense we're talking about
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. boina

    boina Lady of the mites Arachnosupporter

    Right. And science is useless and needs to be disregarded at any cost, especially where it clashes with deeply held beliefs.

    Seriously, how about people who claim tarantulas are pure instinctual creatures would bother to actually look up the widely available science behind learning in invertebrates? There's books about it. Molecular mechanisms of memory have been found, among many other things. Every invertebrate ever tested can learn, even worms. They are not robots and that is a well proven fact.

    But it seems to be so much easier to just believe something and state that believe over and over as a fact than to actually consider the available science.
    • Agree Agree x 3
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  11. Rob1985

    Rob1985 This user has no status. Old Timer

    I'm pretty sure this "learning" by "visualising" you speak of is actually the T using their intricate web system, which is instinctual.
  12. Dennis Nedry

    Dennis Nedry Arachnobaron Active Member

    Portia is a genus of jumping spider that only hunts other spiders, not a T. When I say visualising I mean that they actually look around with their eyes to map out the prey's web and try find a good vantage point to attack the web's inhabitant from. It's well established that thy do learn and are probably similar to an octopus in intelligence
    • Agree Agree x 1
  13. Wolfspidurguy

    Wolfspidurguy Arachnobaron

    okay true spiders have jumping spiders which have about the IQ of a dog so idk if a T can beat that
  14. Whitelightning777

    Whitelightning777 Arachno-heretic Arachnosupporter

    Jumping spiders might be the squids of the spider world but which I mean far smarter then others in that family.

    If there is a correlation between visual Scott and intelligence, poecilotheria tarantulas are probably most like them.

    Mine seems to be quite calm as he seems somewhat better at determining what is and isn't a threat to himself. I recently had the sex confirmed as male. The species is P striata in case anyone is wondering.
  15. Sergic

    Sergic Arachnosquire

    @Dennis Nedry was talking about Portia visualizing, which they most certainly do. Portia can visualize and remember routes they then use to get to prey, even when they can no longer see the prey. Portia can also use trial-and-error to solve problems, including problems that are evolutionarily novel. Robert Jackson's lab in New Zealand studies Portia, and their many papers are great for learning about the extent of the cognitive abilities of Portia.

    That being said, tarantulas can also learn. Mature males can learn to navigate mazes, which is a much more complex cognitive task than simply following their web. The biggest issue with tarantula intelligence seems to be a lack of studies on it. The long generation times of tarantulas make them far worse lab animals than jumping spiders and other true spiders. I don't have an opinion on how tarantulas stack up cognitively against other spiders, and the only way to find out would be to test for intelligence in tarantulas, rather than assume they have none.

    @boina is correct that tarantulas are not just instinctual robots. In fact, many invertebrates have been shown to possess rather striking cognitive abilities. Bees can learn through cultural transmission, some orb weaving spiders have a sense of how many individual prey items are stored in their larders, etc.
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  16. Lithobius

    Lithobius Arachnosquire

    Portia and some other spiders also have object permanence which puts them a step above a LOT of animals, intelligence-wise.
  17. Andrea82

    Andrea82 Arachnoking Active Member

    What? Jumping spiders have an IQ of a dog? Where did you get that idea?
  18. Wolfspidurguy

    Wolfspidurguy Arachnobaron

    okay i dont remember where i read that but they are pretty ding dang smart
  19. Belegnole

    Belegnole Tarantula Guy Old Timer


    True Spider = 0
    Tarantula = 0

    IQ is a measurement of intelligence in humans. Using it with regards to other animals is anthropomorphizing.
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  20. Dennis Nedry

    Dennis Nedry Arachnobaron Active Member

    Why can't you just accept our new arachnid overlords? :troll: