Breeding Q

ahas

Arachnodemon
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Hey guys,

Is it advisable to buy lots of spiderlings to create a breeding group?

It says in a book (Tarantulas and Other Arachnids) that the males would die before the females matures. Is this true?


thanks,

Fred
 

wicked

Arachnobaron
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Yes, males mature faster than the females, but if breeding is your aim, buying a group is a good idea. You have a better chance of getting females and you can always send your males out on breeding loans. In turn the offspring produced by the loan would mature and the males of those could then be bred with your females.
 

ahas

Arachnodemon
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Thanks Wicked for your reply. :) Now I know I should get a group. I' ve been thinking a buying maybe 4 or 5 slings for breeding.
 

Stan Schultz

Arachnoprince
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... Is it advisable to buy lots of spiderlings to create a breeding group?

It says in a book (Tarantulas and Other Arachnids) that the males would die before the females matures. Is this true? ...
Another simple question with a complex answer.

Yes, it's a good idea to buy a bunch of tarantulas of the same kind. (Attempting to mate different kinds is extremely difficult and would produce hybrids if successful. WE WILL NOT GO OFF ON A TANGENT ABOUT HYBRIDS IN THIS THREAD, PLEASE! Start a new thread, instead.) If possible try to get more males than females. (Some dealers will sex them for you before they ship them.)

Why? Because the males normally become impotent and die within a few months after experiencing their ultimate molt. So, while they may breed several females that one season, they only breed for ONE season. On the other years you may not have any mature males at all if you didn't get several.

On the other hand, the females normally live for many years after reaching sexual maturity, and will breed on at least most of those years. Ergo, you need more males than females.

But, you should get males of several different ages. That would mean getting some several years in a row, or every second year, to make sure that they mature over a span of time rather than all in the same season.

But, you can alter the growth and maturation rates of your male tarantulas to some extent by keeping them under a variety of different conditions. Some might be kept in a cooler room, others in a warmer room. Some would be power fed, others fed normally, still others fed sparingly, for instance. This would tend to spread their maturing years over a wide time period, maybe a decade or more.

BUT, you need to be sure that your males and females are not too closely related. Sibling and even cousin matings are not good. They tend to conserve and amplify all of the worst qualities of both parents. (They also tend to conserve and amplify any good qualities and the process is sometimes used in animal husbandry FOR ONE GENERATION ONLY to develop offspring that are homozygous for a given character or trait. You aren't interested in this, though.)

So, you need to somehow acquire males that were bred of different parents AND of different ages than your females, and the best way to do this is to get them from different sources and on different years, and keep accurate records of who is related to who and how old each is.

That means questioning your sources very carefully about where their males came from and exactly how old they are. Some dealers will not be very cooperative in this regard because they don't want you to know their sources. Others will be most helpful because they, too, are interested in the health of the hobby as well as their business. Is there any question about who you should patronize?

You do know about the breeding/male swapping forums on these various message boards don't you? If not, let us know. We can supply links.

You will spend a lot of evenings carefully plotting a breeding strategy and looking for prospective mature males on these forums. But, of course, that's what makes this so much fun!

Best of luck. Enjoy breeding your tarantulas!
 

wicked

Arachnobaron
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Hmm, never crossed my mind that the 'group' in question would be anything other than the same kind.

BUT, you need to be sure that your males and females are not too closely related. Sibling and even cousin matings are not good. They tend to conserve and amplify all of the worst qualities of both parents. (They also tend to conserve and amplify any good qualities and the process is sometimes used in animal husbandry FOR ONE GENERATION ONLY to develop offspring that are homozygous for a given character or trait. You aren't interested in this, though.)

So, you need to somehow acquire males that were bred of different parents AND of different ages than your females, and the best way to do this is to get them from different sources and on different years, and keep accurate records of who is related to who and how old each is.
Ok, I was wondering about this, if inbreeding was as serious a problem with inverts as it is with mammals. I was thinking perhaps cousins would not be too close as long as it wasn't repeated. How might this affect a species such as B smithi that are under CITES and 'fresh blood' so to speak gets harder and harder to find?
 

Tescos

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Ok, I was wondering about this, if inbreeding was as serious a problem with inverts as it is with mammals. I was thinking perhaps cousins would not be too close as long as it wasn't repeated. How might this affect a species such as B smithi that are under CITES and 'fresh blood' so to speak gets harder and harder to find?

Hi

Here is some interesting stuff on the subject of inbreeding in these threads.

http://www.the-t-store.co.uk/forum/index.php?showtopic=7259&hl=inbreeding
http://www.arachnoboards.com/ab/showthread.php?t=62612&highlight=inbreeding
http://www.thebts.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=2498&highlight=inbreeding

All and all I wouldn't say it is much of a problem going by the information shown. Or is there any new proof that it is?
All the best
Chris
 

wicked

Arachnobaron
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Thank you Tescos, those threads were very interesting indeed.
 

ahas

Arachnodemon
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Wow, thanks Pikaia! That really helps. :) Thanks for all the replies guys.

Fred
 

petshopguy

Arachnosquire
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Great info guys - thx alot. I will be breeding in a few years - I am building my inventory of slings now. Valuable information.
 

Stan Schultz

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Hmm, never crossed my mind that the 'group' in question would be anything other than the same kind. ...
One never knows what's going through another's head, especially when we're dealing with these forums and most of the normal conversational cues are missing.

... Ok, I was wondering about this, if inbreeding was as serious a problem with inverts as it is with mammals. I was thinking perhaps cousins would not be too close as long as it wasn't repeated. How might this affect a species such as B smithi that are under CITES and 'fresh blood' so to speak gets harder and harder to find?
Houston, we have a SERIOUS problem! We can take heart in the fact that most other animal and plant breeding hobbies and industries have plowed the way for us. We just need to pay attention and learn from them.

Here are a few basic principles. (I am sure that many of you will be able to add to this list, and I encourage it.)

Avoid inbreeding as much as possible. See a previous post in this thread. (Duh!)

Ruthlessly cull the babies from any breeding. This requires a little "tough love," but MUST be done. A couple of methods for doing this are:

» Leave all the babies together for long enough for them to cannibalize each other until the number of survivors is perhaps half the original brood, maybe even less. This weeds out the slow, weak or runty ones.

» Each adult that is to be bred must pass frequent, rigid physical examinations after virtually every molt. If there are any irregularities, they're culled.

Never allow products of any experimental breeding to get out into the general population until and unless you are absolutely certain that the results are not detrimental to the breeding stock as a whole. (For example, albinism might be interesting or cute, but in many species (e.g., humans), albinism is a distinctly undesirable quality, even a fatal one.)

Always clearly label any individuals that have undergone any sort of "hybridization" as such when offering them to anyone else. (Remember that "hybridization" in its most general sense means a cross between any two dissimilar individuals, not necessarily just a cross between different nominal species.)

Only by intensive selective breeding and culling can we maintain the rigor of our stock. The problem is that, as with dogs, cats and a lot of other animals and plants, relatively "unsophisticated" individuals are breeding their tarantulas unwisely or even ignorantly and the result is surely going to come back to haunt us in the future.

Enjoy your 9 eyed, 9 legged, albino tarantulas!
 

pinkfoot

Arachnolord
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That means questioning your sources very carefully about where their males came from and exactly how old they are. Some dealers will not be very cooperative in this regard because they don't want you to know their sources. Others will be most helpful because they, too, are interested in the health of the hobby as well as their business. Is there any question about who you should patronize?
Hey Stan!

I would appreciate some direction in this regard. PM me if prudent...;)

Regarding your latter post: You touched on the subject of eligibility as a breeder, which is critical. Perhaps you could expound on this? viz, the balance between keepers being encouraged to breed their spids, and the fact that casual breedings might well throw mutants into the gene pool, and thus the hobby..?

My breeding programme is still in its infancy, and I'm sure there are many keepers in my position. Should we breed our spids? Which ones should we attempt, and most important, what are the ramifications?

Cheers!
Paul
 

Tescos

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Hi Mr Schultz
Just a few questions in regard to this...
Avoid inbreeding as much as possible. See a previous post in this thread. (Duh!)
What is this advise based on? I only ask this because in the threads I linked to the evidence seems to suggest that the inbreeding of tarantulas is not a big problem, if indeed it is a problem at all.

Ruthlessly cull the babies from any breeding. This requires a little "tough love," but MUST be done. A couple of methods for doing this are:
Why? The only time I consider a cull is if there are hundreds or thousands of spiderlings in the eggsac, and the only reason for this is to reduce the numbers to a more manageable number.

Leave all the babies together for long enough for them to cannibalize each other until the number of survivors is perhaps half the original brood, maybe even less. This weeds out the slow, weak or runty ones.
yep this is how I achive my more manageable number. It also saves on feeding the spiderlings for a while also.

» Each adult that is to be bred must pass frequent, rigid physical examinations after virtually every molt. If there are any irregularities, they're culled.
Ok, where as I see your point in taking a look at the adults to make sure they a heathy enough to breed etc I don't quite get the irregularities thing? I would only cull an adult if it had some bad infection like for example, nematodes, because I know that this could infect my whole breeding group if left unchecked.
If you mean something like two abdomens or extra chevlons on the abdomen in a specie that has them, then I would put more effort into breeding them to try and see if this trate is genetic or not.

Never allow products of any experimental breeding to get out into the general population until and unless you are absolutely certain that the results are not detrimental to the breeding stock as a whole. (For example, albinism might be interesting or cute, but in many species (e.g., humans), albinism is a distinctly undesirable quality, even a fatal one.)
But can albinism (or at least as near to albinism as you can get for spiders)where spiders are conserned not also just be natural? And if you are able to raise then until adulthood then breed them can you not then go some way to prove if this trate is passed on geneticly or not? I do agree though that any offspring should be responibly taken care off.

Always clearly label any individuals that have undergone any sort of "hybridization" as such when offering them to anyone else. (Remember that "hybridization" in its most general sense means a cross between any two dissimilar individuals, not necessarily just a cross between different nominal species.)
That goes without saying except that by offering them to someone else you lose the say as to what happens to them, and who knows what the new owners do with them 4 or 5 years down the road.
Only by intensive selective breeding and culling can we maintain the rigor of our stock.
So I ask have you any real proof to back this up?
The problem is that, as with dogs, cats and a lot of other animals and plants, relatively "unsophisticated" individuals are breeding their tarantulas unwisely or even ignorantly and the result is surely going to come back to haunt us in the future.
I think I am one of your "unsophisticated" individuals (A term I think many including myself could take offence too) as I have bred (in the tarantula sence)mother with son and grandson and cossin etc and still have yet to see any depremental results. Once more I know of an awful lot of people who have done the same and have also not seen anything untoward. I have to admit that I do not know much about gene pools, genetics or anything like this and so in this case rely on what is told on the internet, but from what I read (see those threads for example) the inbreeding thing is not a big worry at all. Unless of course you or anybody else has the proof to say otherwise?

Enjoy your 9 eyed, 9 legged, albino tarantulas!
And if this was the case could for sure pin it down to inbreeding?

Cheers and all the best
Chris:)
 

ShadowBlade

Planeswalker
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Avoid inbreeding as much as possible. See a previous post in this thread. (Duh!)
While I certainly respect your knowledge of this hobby, I question this post. My study of invertebrate physiology, is that inbreeding presents no serious threat for quite a long time, if at all.

Do you have references or proof as to damage that may be caused by inbreeding?

-Sean
 

Drachenjager

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While I certainly respect your knowledge of this hobby, I question this post. My study of invertebrate physiology, is that inbreeding presents no serious threat for quite a long time, if at all.

Do you have references or proof as to damage that may be caused by inbreeding?

-Sean
lol yeah me too
No offence Stan,
but it seems to me that some of the small pops of Aphonopelmas in Texas would be seriously hampered by inbreeding if it was a big problem. I know of one site that is only about a half acre wiht maybe 100 Ts population and they are isolated, no known Ts for miles around. and they are fine. Actually i think they may be a species that was not known to be in that part of the state at all. MAybe even undescribed. but ...there isnt enough of them to even get them described if they arent.


they are very docile, healthy and beautiful. and i am sure they are very inbred.
of course that depends on how you define inbreeding
 

Stan Schultz

Arachnoprince
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Hi Mr Schultz
Just a few questions in regard to this...
Chris, your questions are valid and extremely important to the hobby. I am not ignoring you.

Your questions are rather far ranging and in order to do them justice I am gathering data and information. I will respond as soon as I can.

Thanks for your patience.
 

Stan Schultz

Arachnoprince
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Hey Stan!

I would appreciate some direction in this regard. PM me if prudent...;) ...
Paul, I'm not ignoring you, but I need to respond to Tescos/Chris first. This will take a while. Please be patient.
 

MizM

Arachnoprincess
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Only by intensive selective breeding and culling can we maintain the rigor of our stock. The problem is that, as with dogs, cats and a lot of other animals and plants, relatively "unsophisticated" individuals are breeding their tarantulas unwisely or even ignorantly and the result is surely going to come back to haunt us in the future.
We've had jokers here that thought it would be "neat" to experiment with breeding different species... I hope to God that they weren't serious or successful. A note to all: serious hobbyists do not encourage this practice!!!

I personally will never breed a T unless I have a reliable identification or have purchased it from a reputable seller. I have several girls in my collection that are doomed to die without bearing young as they have the dubious title of "sp".:(
 

Tescos

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Chris, your questions are valid and extremely important to the hobby. I am not ignoring you.

Your questions are rather far ranging and in order to do them justice I am gathering data and information. I will respond as soon as I can.

Thanks for your patience.
Hi

Sure no problem I don't hold you to anything but it is nice to know you going to so much trouble to answer some of the things. Thankyou for this.
All the best
Chris
 
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