Avicularia Question -- Housing/Tarantulality?

RugbyDave

Arachnoprince
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Apr 5, 2003
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Hey everyone!

My Question is below, don't worry,this isn't just a Rep Show report :)

I just came back from the Pittsburgh Rep show -- amazing selection of T's! i got 6, instead of 5, and they're all docile T's... I'm glad since I have pretty much all agressive T's...

I also saw the most BEAUTIFUL T.blondi (about 9 inches) for about $75. And the most AMAZING Brazilian Black (maybe 8 inches) for $180..

Among my other T's i picked up an A.avicularia -- I've never had them before. My father and mother have some Arboreals, but they're south of the equator, so I need to ask you guys my question:

S/he is about a 6 months old, amazing black velvety abdomen, beautiful colouration (Is there ANYTHING more beautiful in the world than an adolescent Avicularia-versacolor/avicularia/purp/etc..??!!). Anyways, What should her cage be like -

I know, obviously, its tall, and some plants and the like, but what about the water dish? Some people say at the top, and i've seen many researches with the dish at the bottom...

And she's REALLLLLLLY slow untill she gets spooked, then she's fast as hell, like a usual avic. I mean, she's healthy and all, but just slow. And each time i 'pet' her abdomen, she rasies it up, but not in a hair-flicking way. Then she'll rub her abdomen along my finger when i stop.... I'm assuming thats normal eh? I don't handle or pet my T's too much, but can you really blame me for wanting to pet my new avic? :)
so give me the best setup please!!!

I'm shooting for 50 T's by the end of the summer :)

Now i just need me a girlfriend

peace,
Dave
 

RugbyDave

Arachnoprince
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Oh come on, you know you want to help me out :)

just help with the housing issue and the Tarantulality issue

:D


peace all!
 

LPacker79

ArachnoSpaz
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I've got two A. avicularia, a 1/2" and a 2 inch. My 2 incher is in a small pet pal set on it's side so the top is the front. I've never seen her go down to her water dish, I mist her cage walls every other day. She does have a water dish, but that's mainly to maintain humidity. There's no substrate in her cage. I have two thick plastic "vines" that are bendable and have suction cups to attach to the walls.
My avic is more docile than either of my G. roseas, and the way they walk is so cute, lots of leg waving.

Leanne
 

belewfripp

Arachnobaron
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Most avicularia species, in my experience, are very slow-moving when they are just hanging around, but then tarantulas in general don't exactly 'haul abdomen' everywhere. The abdomen-raising thing is the way it urticates. Avicularia urticating hair have the barb facing away from the spider so that instead of kicking them the spider rubs them into things and the barbs on the hairs catch. I wouldn't pet her butt too much, I have found that if you work bare-handed with avics, their hairs can get to be very irritating. They like to line their web retreats with hairs too, so watch the webbing.


As far as a habitat goes, I've generally not gone along with the belief that arboreals need a tall cage. I would recommend the same vertical space requirement as is recommended horizontally for terrestrials, i.e. length, or in this case height, at least one and a half times the legspan of the spider. This does result in a cage that is usually larger than for a terrestrial of similar size, but not by too much, and with four sides of the tank, plus the underside of the lid, and the occasional foray to ground level, I feel this is plenty of space for them. Now this assumes a pet pal type cage, some people like to use 2-liter soda bottles and the like, these also work well, and though taller than I usually use, the circumference is smaller, so it works out similarly and they tend to take up less space on a shelf, provided the shelf is tall enough.


I usually place my water dishes for avics at ground level, I have witnessed them drink from them many times and have even seen thirsty avics waiting by the dish for me to fill it up, so they know what it's there for. I also usually place a little bit of peat as substrate simply for moisture-retaining purposes. Avics don't need a swamp tank, and ventilation is important, but in winter months with indoor heating I find that some added humidity from moistened substrate is appreciated.


I hope this helps, and I hope the info wasn't redundant, I know you said your family has kept tarantulas for a long time.


Adrian
 

indigoeyes

Arachnosquire
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Mar 10, 2003
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I just acquired an Avic Versicolour sling. I'm also new to the obsession, so I wouldn't consider my advice to be "sound judgment".. I also like a little tiny bit of extravagence when it comes to my T's homes. The best homes I have found have come from Hobby Lobby. :) I buy acrylic or luicite plastic boxes. My slings are all in boxes used for 1:64 "Hot Wheels" cars. I also have a set of acrylic boxes ready for when they get bigger that measure 4x4x6. I cut the tops of the boxes with a soldering iron, leaving 1/2 an inch on each side, then I hot glue plastic mesh over the opening for ventilation.

With the versicolour, I just tipped the box on it's side. I put just a bit of substrate on the bottom, and put two twigs in there. One that goes to the top, one that curves into the side a bit. For ventilation, I put a little "trap door" made of plastic mesh on the side (where the top of the box was) about 2/3 down. And the water dish is on the bottom. I might put one higher up the walls when I move it to a larger home.

Hope this helps!
 

RugbyDave

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Hey guys!

Thanks for the info --

my family gen. also doesn't get into the BIG TALL cages for Avics or other arboreal types -- I mean, yes, they are tall cages, but I've seen some researches that have these HUGE cages, and, though it doesnt happen too too often, the fall from that height can be pretty hardcore..

i got my new avic in the new cage, and she's def. not rubbing hairs on me. I was at my buddy's house and his avic CONSTANTLY pushes her abdomen down each time he tries to handle her.

My avic does something much much much different. She kinda rubs it side to side, and under a microscope (haha, i know, but i'm in medical school and they give us one :) ) there are no hairs.

also no itching or anything. she's realllll friendly.


again, thanks!
 

belewfripp

Arachnobaron
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My apologies, I assumed from what you posted earlier that she was raising her abdomen up into the air and rubbing it against your finger. That is typical avic hair-spreading behavior. Lowering it or moving it side-to-side could just unrelated odd avic behavior.

Adrian
 

RugbyDave

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Hey adrian --

no apologies neccessary -- thanks for the reply at any rate!

Man, its odd, but when i take my avic out for a little bit, she'll run up myhand to my head,run down to the other hand, and then she'll keep going back and forth. Then she'll go from my head to the wall, and stay on the wall right above my head (in my living room) for about a good half hour. She'll go back onto my head, and back down to my hand. This happens alot. It''s cool, but odd, but awesome avic craziness!

peace
 

RugbyDave

Arachnoprince
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I'M STILL WORRIED!

I still need help though --

its been a while, and s/he hasn't eaten the cricket or anything.... I'm wondering if i should move him/her into a smaller tank, and you know what that means -- if i go buy a smaller tank, that leaves me with a nice big new tank open, which means NEW T time!!! :) I love these little excuses to go buy another T, eh?

but seriously,
what should i do with the A.avic? Still no food (almost 2 weeks?) and no web at all, not even a strand of web!

nice size, as you can see from the pics, but i'm still worried. S/he'll fall off the side of the cage every once in a while, too... i dunno..

please help, Avic people!
thanks
peace,
dave
 

belewfripp

Arachnobaron
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Aug 17, 2002
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Have you tried chucking the cricket directly at the T? When I feed my spiders I grab a cricket, shake it up in my hand like a die and then lob it directly at the spider. Most of my avics will grab it immediately. If this produces no result, you might try a smaller tank, it is possible the spider is having difficulty finding the cricket, but it is also possible the T could be close to a molt. This seems less likely in view of no webbing, though, most of mine will web up a storm when it is time to molt. I wouldn't worry too much about the lack of webbing, my A. geroldi went a month before she made anything, and then for the next 6 months lived in webs she'd made at ground level. It wasn't until after that that she finally made a web off of the ground.


Adrian
 

RugbyDave

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Hey adrian -- thanks, cos you're like the only one helping me out on this issue!

cleaning day for the tanks, and i put my 2 avics (just bought another one, smaller) in little deli cups, and decided "what the hell" and threw crickets in with em... after running away scared like little prissy girl T's, they finally started munching on em.. which makes me feel better... i just cant wait till theres a web, and i can throw the crickets right on the web...


thanks again,
off to buy a slightly smaller tank

peace,
dave
 
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