Do huntsman spiders stop molting once they reach adulthood?

kevinlowl

Arachnoknight
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Aug 21, 2015
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Title question. I'm suggested to think they do stop molting once adult because it's been a long time since my girl last molted.
 

TheSpiderChick

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Oct 14, 2010
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Yes, all true spiders stop molting once they reach sexual maturity.
EDIT: Sorry, I misspoke. MOST, but not all true spiders stop molting after maturity. There are some exceptions.
(thank you @Ungoliant for calling out my mistake!)
 
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Ungoliant

Malleus Aranearum
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Yes, all true spiders stop molting once they reach sexual maturity.
Most but not all. There are some haplogynes, like Kukulcania, that continue molting past maturity (at least as females). My mature female Kukulcania hibernalis molt about once a year. (Once they molt, they can't produce additional egg sacs without mating again.)
 
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TheSpiderChick

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Most but not all. There are some haplogynes, like Kukulcania, that continue molting past maturity (at least as females). My mature female Kukulcania hibernalis molt about once a year. (Once they molt, they can't produce additional egg sacs without mating again.)
Dadgummit! As soon as I had hit the "post" button on my answer, I thought "aw man, why did I say ALL true spiders? There are prolly some exeptions!"
I know better than to make statements like that without double checking. Thanks for correcting me.
I am actually gonna edit that reply so that it's not sitting there as a bogus statement.
 
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TheSpiderChick

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My mature female Kukulcania hibernalis molt about once a year.
Just curious, how long has your Kukulcania been alive? I've had a few, but released them after doing some presentations, so I've not seen how long they last.

Also re "Once they molt, they can't produce additional egg sacs without mating again"- Interesting info! I hadn't thought about that.
 

Ungoliant

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Just curious, how long has your Kukulcania been alive? I've had a few, but released them after doing some presentations, so I've not seen how long they last.
They are extremely long-lived for true spiders. I caught some adult females five years ago, and they are still going strong. Given how long they take to mature (the two I kept from a 2012 brood are not yet full grown), I would not be surprised if they lived 10+ years.

Recluse spiders (Sicariidae) are reported to be long-lived as well, but I don't have any experience keeping them. I would not be surprised if there were other long-lived haplogynes.


Also re "Once they molt, they can't produce additional egg sacs without mating again"- Interesting info! I hadn't thought about that.
Reviewing my records, I did have one make a fertile egg sac six days after molting. The eggs must have already been developing by then, as the time between mating and making a sac is at least 3-4 weeks. (She mated 17 days before molting.) However, it's my understanding that fertilization usually occurs as the eggs are being laid, so I'm not sure what was going on there.

None of my other females ever produced a sac after molting unless they had mated after molting.
 

Rick McJimsey

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Sicarius / Hexophthalma do indeed live for quite a long time, even males after reaching maturity. Loxosceles also live for a good amount of time if kept in certain conditions, compared to other true spiders, but not to the extent of the two aforementioned genera.
 
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