Do I have what I need for a Aphonopelma chalcodes and anyone have a good caresheet

The Amazing Me

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Ok sorry for all these posts but I was told to only do research here. But could anyone tell me how to care for a Aphonopelma chalcodes.
And do I have the right supplies. I have a 10 gallon tank with lid, and a skull hide and a water dish. What substrate is right for them? I could easily get crickets that is what I feed my other exotic pet. Do they need anything else other than that substrate? DO they need a heat pad? My house is 68 degrees.
 

Chris LXXIX

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10 gallon on my book is insanity but whatever, you can use that for an adult even if I disagree on such pure waste of space as a personal opinion :pompous:

Just like an insanity are those 'skulls' and other rough plastic stuff: hides are cork bark and other wood. Are ok even those Exo caves as 'last chance'.

What if your Theraphosidae climb and fall into such hard piece of plastic with 'spikes' even, like those 'Dino' sort of and 'skulls' in general? Bad news.

The substrate is a never ending debate: topsoil (check what's inside, on that case), coco fiber, Irish peat moss... all is good one moment.
 

Chris LXXIX

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No heat pad/additional heathing unless temperature are really (really) too colder :-s
 

nicodimus22

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An A. chalcodes doesn't need more than a 5.5 gallon tank or similar-sized container even when it's fully grown. You can put it in a 10 gallon, but it may not use a lot of the space, and it's more expensive to fill with substrate.

You need to get a piece of acrylic and drill holes in it to serve as a lid. Something like this:



Screen lids are dangerous because the T's tarsal claws can get caught in them, which can result in a lost leg or bad fall.

Eco Earth (coco fiber) is fine. Make sure to fill the tank up so that the distance from the lid to the substrate is no greater than 1.5 the tarantula's diagonal leg span. If your T is 4 inches, you should have no more than a 6-inch gap. This prevents long falls, which can be fatal due to a ruptured abdomen.

No heat pad. Generally speaking, if you are comfortable, it will be comfortable. If it gets really cold, consider a space heater.

Crickets are good. My A. chalcodes seems to prefer them over roaches.
 
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boina

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I agree with everyone else (especially: NO heat pad!!!), except I like large enclosures. Hey, it's my space to waste!
 

cold blood

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A good care sheet...that's funny...words that should never be written next to one another...lol. Care sheets are inherently, not good, and should not be relied on in any way.

Aside from the size being a little big, your set up should be fine...like mentioned, the skull hide is totally cheesy and probably less than deal, but to each their own. Just make sure that tank is filled over halfway with sub to keep it safe (one reason why aquariums are less than ideal) and make sure you aren't using a screen top.

Specific subs aren't needed for specific ts...any of the good subs can be used for any tarantula, its just personal preference. Eco earth, jungle mix, coco fiber, top soil and peat moss and any combo of these are good substrates.

Likewise, feeders need not be specific, as long as they aren't wild caught...crickets are the hobby staple...but mealworms, wax worms, super worms, roaches, or just about anything the pet store sells will work as a feeder.

Chalcodes has no heat requirements, your home will be just fine temp-wise...60's is ok for this species.
 

viper69

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The reason why terrestrial tarantulas have such a large amount of substrate inside their setups is because they can fall and die or injur themselves even within a 10 gallon tank or less. The recommended distance between top of substrate and bottom of the lid is no more than 1.5X the diagonal leg span.
 

The Amazing Me

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A good care sheet...that's funny...words that should never be written next to one another...lol. Care sheets are inherently, not good, and should not be relied on in any way.

Aside from the size being a little big, your set up should be fine...like mentioned, the skull hide is totally cheesy and probably less than deal, but to each their own. Just make sure that tank is filled over halfway with sub to keep it safe (one reason why aquariums are less than ideal) and make sure you aren't using a screen top.

Specific subs aren't needed for specific ts...any of the good subs can be used for any tarantula, its just personal preference. Eco earth, jungle mix, coco fiber, top soil and peat moss and any combo of these are good substrates.

Likewise, feeders need not be specific, as long as they aren't wild caught...crickets are the hobby staple...but mealworms, wax worms, super worms, roaches, or just about anything the pet store sells will work as a feeder.

Chalcodes has no heat requirements, your home will be just fine temp-wise...60's is ok for this species.
Uhm so can I insert a glad divider and cove it and have a tarabtula on one half and another on the other and have something so they can't see each other
 

viper69

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Uhm so can I insert a glad divider and cove it and have a tarabtula on one half and another on the other and have something so they can't see each other
This is not recommended, esp for people new to Ts. We've seen a fair amount of "one escaped, they both escaped, one ate the other one" As for sight, that's not an issue so much. Ts have very poor vision, esp terrestrials.
 
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nicodimus22

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Uhm so can I insert a glass divider and cove it and have a tarabtula on one half and another on the other and have something so they can't see each other
This will almost certainly result in you waking up to one really fat spider someday. They can squeeze through tiny spaces like an octopus, man. Separate enclosures.
 

aphono

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The substrate is a never ending debate: topsoil (check what's inside, on that case), coco fiber, Irish peat moss... all is good one moment.
what should one check for in topsoil?

So far all of the local peat moss have fertilizer added(MiracleGro brand), this is bad right.
 

Chris LXXIX

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what should one check for in topsoil?

So far all of the local peat moss have fertilizer added(MiracleGro brand), this is bad right.
Well... someone in the topsoil, therefore, should check if inside there's that stuff you mentioned that you found in peat moss as well.

I use Irish peat moss (mostly for Scolopendridae) and where I buy that, here in Italy, is 100% garbage free :-s
 

viper69

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what should one check for in topsoil?

So far all of the local peat moss have fertilizer added(MiracleGro brand), this is bad right.
If it's not pure topsoil, DO NOT use it. They don't encounter such chemicals in nature, why provide them w/such stuff in captivity? ;)

You/re trying to replicate or mimic nature to SOME degree, not provide them with a chemical waste dump :D
 

Rob1985

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For what it's worth, A. chalcodes are super easy to care for, easier than Grammastola. They eat like machines, rarely ever fast and tolerate a variety of temperatures from cooler (70s) to warmer (80s) and like it bone dry. In my opinion, they might be the easiest T to care for in the hobby.

I have a 4.5" female "New River" varient, who is a bit flighty and defensive, but nothing that I would consider unmanageable by a noob.
 

cold blood

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what should one check for in topsoil?

So far all of the local peat moss have fertilizer added(MiracleGro brand), this is bad right.
You want the cheapstuff....stuff marketed for filling holes, not growing plants. This is one of the home depot brands (the other is timberline) and its what I use...Earthgro...$1.37 for 40lb.
 

PanzoN88

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I agree with what everyone else has said, the biggest thing being the heat pad issue. I, like many others advise against them. As for substrate, in my opinion Eco earth is the way to go. I am hesitant to experiment with topsoil, but if @cold blood says it is good then it likely is.
 

volcanopele

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Just echoing what others have said: 10 gallons is pretty big for a chalcodes. They never get very big, so you would have to fill the tank halfway with substrate to ensure that it doesn't hurt itself if it were to fall. Having previously had an enclosure that was too big for my chalcodes previously (a 12"x12"x12" cube), I know how much of a pain that is. The enclosure becomes tremendously heavy for no benefit. I have mine in a large critter keeper (14"x8"x8") now and that seem to be plenty of room for her.

Some people here might not like critter keepers, but considering that you'll want to keep the substrate bone dry anyway, I don't find the "excess" ventilation to be an issue, as it would with a lot of other species. Speaking of substrate, I use coco fiber mixed with a bit of sand (4:1 ratio) just to make it be a little closer match to the soils I find around here. But seriously, CHEAP top soil, coco fiber, or peat moss will work. Top soil is probably best, but again, find a cheap bag that has NO added fertilizers or pesticides.

For hides, I'd be a bit worried about fall damage with what you want to use, particularly in a big enclosure like a 10 gallon tank. I use a half-buried half-log though I'm also a big fan of half-buried cork bark hides as others have suggested. Half-logs are pretty easy to find at most petstores at Petsmart and work well if you put them in at a slant into the substrate.

A water dish is important. I tend to find that the Ts that prefer really bone dry substrates tend to drink more often (or at least I catch them drinking more often). Heating... 68 F should be fine for this species. If it gets too much lower, consider heating the room they're in with something like a space heater. Don't use a heat pad.
 

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