B. Smithi "dandruf" or fungus?

Screamingreenmachine

Arachnosquire
Joined
Jun 30, 2016
Messages
65
Back story! So over the past several months, my local pet store has had an absolutely gorgeous Smithi for sale but it was not in a good environment. The enclosure was designed more for an arboreal reptile/amphibian and not for an arachnid, especially a terrestrial one. No hide, shallow substrate. Today I was at the store and she was hanging onto the top screen with an 18 inch drop waiting for her. I asked if I could take her out and take a look at her and they let me. She's beautiful, fat as can be though, and about 3.5 inches. They had no clue on the sex but a look at the underbelly screamed female.

I don't fault this store at all and will continue to use them, but they are more reptile inclined and now and then they will get a tarantula in and they don't really care for them that well (wood chips in some, half an inch of coco fiber in others, lots of lighting). They don't abuse them by any means! In fact they seemed sad to see this one go

Now I noticed she has white flaky stuff on her carapace and abdomen, but besides that she seems healthy. Apparently eats like a machine, never kicks hairs, and even though I don't like handling them, she had zero issues being picked up, and just sort of hung out.

Now back to the white flaky stuff. She's had it on her for several months but it really hasn't changed at all... it's not gotten any worse. She has only become a good deal fatter from all the crickets, so she is clearly eating. Now I picked her up today for a steal and i also grabbed her because I just wanted her in a better home, but I have to ask, does she look unhealthy at all to any of you on here? She has nothing around her fangs or mouth, only a bit of the white on one joint, and the rest is as you can see in the picture (the white on the ground around her is actually just the light reflecting off of water). Is the white stuff just dusty fecal matter, or some old hairs, a mix of both, or something more sinister like a fungus or mites (which i don't believe it is because nothing has moved)? I tried to gently clean her carapace with a damp q-tip which she didn't object to at all. Some of the white appeared to have come off of her when I tried that for a few seconds.

Here she is:

 

KezyGLA

Arachnoking
Joined
Apr 8, 2016
Messages
3,033
I doubt its fungus. Probably poop.

If it is in the right environment now I wouldnt worry about fungus anyway as enclosure should be dry.
 

Screamingreenmachine

Arachnosquire
Joined
Jun 30, 2016
Messages
65
considering it was a reptile store, maybe some calcium powder?
That might be a possibility I didn't even think of! It might be that considering when they do their animal feedings, their crickets are sprinkled with it.

I doubt its fungus. Probably poop.

If it is in the right environment now I wouldnt worry about fungus anyway as enclosure should be dry.
The enclosure is dry except for the water bowl that was knocked over by accident (the wet sub in the picture). Will continue to monitor it, but this does make me feel less worried
 

Matttoadman

Arachnoknight
Joined
Aug 11, 2016
Messages
216
considering it was a reptile store, maybe some calcium powder?
At my local store, a few of the part time help grab a cup of heavily dusted crickets and just throw them in every tank in the "reptile section". The t's commonly have calcium on them. High schoolers just don't care.
 

darkness975

dream reaper
Arachnosupporter +
Joined
Aug 31, 2012
Messages
3,917
Back story! So over the past several months, my local pet store has had an absolutely gorgeous Smithi for sale but it was not in a good environment. The enclosure was designed more for an arboreal reptile/amphibian and not for an arachnid, especially a terrestrial one. No hide, shallow substrate. Today I was at the store and she was hanging onto the top screen with an 18 inch drop waiting for her. I asked if I could take her out and take a look at her and they let me. She's beautiful, fat as can be though, and about 3.5 inches. They had no clue on the sex but a look at the underbelly screamed female.

I don't fault this store at all and will continue to use them, but they are more reptile inclined and now and then they will get a tarantula in and they don't really care for them that well (wood chips in some, half an inch of coco fiber in others, lots of lighting). They don't abuse them by any means! In fact they seemed sad to see this one go

Now I noticed she has white flaky stuff on her carapace and abdomen, but besides that she seems healthy. Apparently eats like a machine, never kicks hairs, and even though I don't like handling them, she had zero issues being picked up, and just sort of hung out.

Now back to the white flaky stuff. She's had it on her for several months but it really hasn't changed at all... it's not gotten any worse. She has only become a good deal fatter from all the crickets, so she is clearly eating. Now I picked her up today for a steal and i also grabbed her because I just wanted her in a better home, but I have to ask, does she look unhealthy at all to any of you on here? She has nothing around her fangs or mouth, only a bit of the white on one joint, and the rest is as you can see in the picture (the white on the ground around her is actually just the light reflecting off of water). Is the white stuff just dusty fecal matter, or some old hairs, a mix of both, or something more sinister like a fungus or mites (which i don't believe it is because nothing has moved)? I tried to gently clean her carapace with a damp q-tip which she didn't object to at all. Some of the white appeared to have come off of her when I tried that for a few seconds.

Here she is:

I would ease up on the feeding. That abdomen looks a bit on the large side.
Given where it has been for the last few months it could be any number of things. @Venom1080 s suggestion is a good guess.

The next molt should get rid of that stuff as well as rejuvenate her coloring.
Not sure why the substrate is wet in that picture but the only water it should have is a water dish.

Also, it is not a good idea to handle her.
 

darkness975

dream reaper
Arachnosupporter +
Joined
Aug 31, 2012
Messages
3,917
I don't fault this store at all and will continue to use them, but they are more reptile inclined and now and then they will get a tarantula in and they don't really care for them that well (wood chips in some, half an inch of coco fiber in others, lots of lighting). They don't abuse them by any means!
Sounds like abuse to me. Whether or not is in intentional is irrelevant. You should give them some proper literature or tell them to browse here for proper care of whatever species they bring in. It will be better for everyone, but most importantly for the spider(s) they bring in.
If they truly care about the animals they sell then they will have no issue with correcting the oversights to make the environment for them the best it can be while they are in their care.
 

Venom1080

Arachnoemperor
Joined
Sep 24, 2015
Messages
4,583
At my local store, a few of the part time help grab a cup of heavily dusted crickets and just throw them in every tank in the "reptile section". The t's commonly have calcium on them. High schoolers just don't care.
Well, at least it's not harmful..
 

Matttoadman

Arachnoknight
Joined
Aug 11, 2016
Messages
216
Sounds like abuse to me. Whether or not is in intentional is irrelevant. You should give them some proper literature or tell them to browse here for proper care of whatever species they bring in. It will be better for everyone, but most importantly for the spider(s) they bring in.
If they truly care about the animals they sell then they will have no issue with correcting the oversights to make the environment for them the best it can be while they are in their care.
I agree. If your business is selling pets and supplies, you should go above and beyond to provide them and the buyer with the best care and info.
 

Screamingreenmachine

Arachnosquire
Joined
Jun 30, 2016
Messages
65
I would ease up on the feeding. That abdomen looks a bit on the large side.
Given where it has been for the last few months it could be any number of things. @Venom1080 s suggestion is a good guess.

The next molt should get rid of that stuff as well as rejuvenate her coloring.
Not sure why the substrate is wet in that picture but the only water it should have is a water dish.

Also, it is not a good idea to handle her.
Oh I am not offering her anything for a while. She came like that from the store. Fat, fat, fat, and I'll give her some time before offering her anything.
I will continue to keep an eye on that white stuff, to make sure it doesn't seem to grow, and that she remains healthy. Looking forward to seeing how she will look after the next molt!

Oh the substrate is wet do to me accidentally knocking over her water bowl while finishing setting the enclosure up for her. It is all dried now!
Also, I never handle any of my tarantulas but I did handle her when I got her in order to get her off the screen top. Cupped her and she came right down onto my hands.

Sounds like abuse to me. Whether or not is in intentional is irrelevant. You should give them some proper literature or tell them to browse here for proper care of whatever species they bring in. It will be better for everyone, but most importantly for the spider(s) they bring in.
If they truly care about the animals they sell then they will have no issue with correcting the oversights to make the environment for them the best it can be while they are in their care.
I did inform them about the basic care needed and they truly seemed receptive of what I was saying, so hopefully they will change their ways of keeping tarantulas since they seem to love every animal they have in the store. Next time I'm there for crickets, I'll inform them about this website so they can do some research on what needs to be done!
 

Andrea82

Arachnoemperor
Joined
Jan 12, 2016
Messages
3,610
She looks in rough shape, definitely in need of a molt. And she's really fat, i'm surprised she hasn't stopped eating yet.
As for the pet store...the staff may mean well, but it's usually on management level that things go wrong. Type petco or Lps in the search function, and you can read everything about it. ;)
 

Screamingreenmachine

Arachnosquire
Joined
Jun 30, 2016
Messages
65
She looks in rough shape, definitely in need of a molt. And she's really fat, i'm surprised she hasn't stopped eating yet.
As for the pet store...the staff may mean well, but it's usually on management level that things go wrong. Type petco or Lps in the search function, and you can read everything about it. ;)
I can't wait for her to molt, and I'm wondering if she might be entering premolt because her colors are faded. She's definitely a fat one and I wouldn't be surprised if she would turn down any meal I would offer her now. I haven't tried, and the store said she ate like crazy (probably fed way too often). I do hope she has a nice and uneventful molt when it is time. I'm just really happy to get her out of the store and into a better enclosure for her!
 

Venom1080

Arachnoemperor
Joined
Sep 24, 2015
Messages
4,583
??? Don't think I ever posted on this thread :rofl: Should be OK, the T looks like it just needs a molt. Just give it a few weeks and I'm sure you'll have a beautiful, freshly molted T in no time :D
Lol you rated my post "clarification please" above.
 
Top