Do tarantulas prefer plants over hides?

Irithyllian

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Recently I added a nearly adult gbb to my collection, I made a very ‘exciting’ enclosure as opposed to a pretty basic on most of mine, however she’s been in it nearly a week and hasn’t used the hide I premade using cork bark and a grapevine, hopefully the pics I attach are good.

She seems to prefer to hang around the fake plants on the back is the hide I made insufficient? Will using the plants behind cause stress? If it’s normal and not necessary to change anything it can have its hide wherever it likes, but if I did something wrong advice for the next enclosure I set up would be helpful :p thanks E3766AC4-6433-4F77-A8B7-72DA03BF1788.jpeg 133316DE-4FC4-46A8-A5C5-9B70F34801DD.jpeg BD706B4B-2DAE-4D72-81B8-394843E35AEF.jpeg
 

Blueandbluer

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Congrats on your GBB, one of my favorite species. That enclosure looks beautiful, but be prepared for your spider to completely trash it… Since GBBs are prolific webers, much if not all of it will be obscured by silk in time. You will also probably lose a lot of crickets in there, but if that doesn’t worry you, then it’s fine. It does look very nice.

on the hide… It looks too ooen to me. The opening to a hide should ideally be just large enough for the spider to get in. Any larger and they will feel exposed, ruining the point of a hide. Unfortunately, if you can see him, that usually means it’s too big. I would either sink it deeper into the substrate, or add more substrate, until it’s just barely bigger than the resting horizontal legspan of your spider.
 

viper69

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Generally Ts don’t move into a mammoth cave like what I see. They prefer tight spaces. You should check out pictures of actual T burrows to get an idea

Also seems like the plants provide zero space for your T to walk

Lastly no one can predict what a T will choose

Why would using plants cause stress??

Suggest you watch the video of GBB in its natural environment with one of the world’s greatest T experts.
 

Smotzer

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You have put in a lot of work, but I would remove the hide and I would place your plant cover more strategically and as pieces not entire plants. as it is now, you have a feeder nightmare, if you were to use crickets they will be able to hide very easily and you will not be able to gaurentee that they have been eaten. And your T has no open ground. Well done you hhave put a lot of effort and thought into this it just needs a little tweaking to me.
 

DomGom TheFather

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No matter what you do, your spider will have other plans. You could and probably should make adjustments but you're not in charge when the lid closes. Looks nice, though.
 

Chris LXXIX

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Don't take this too bad, but personally I wouldn't had used, at all, a front opening (if I'm not wrong) 'Exo' enclosure. Normally sized top opening enclosures (e.g the average KK) are better.
Also the substrate seems IMO too much on the moist side, which is absolutely a 'no way' for this species, but then again, maybe are just my eyes screwed up :shifty:

No need at all for sphagnum moss, it's a 'GBB', not a T. stirmi. But if you like that, aesthetically speaking, it's ok.

The fake plants are fine, even if IMO there's too much of those.
 

RoachCoach

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It usually comes down to how well they can hide in a hide and not be noticed by predators. If it is large and open it could cause stress until they web enough of the surface area. But C. Chromatopelma are pretty ballsy when it comes to it. Take into consideration their natural environment. Lowland scrub brush. There is greenery yes, but not all year round.
 

kingshockey

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the gbb i had would have just webbed all the dcoration in there and then sat calm as you please. ontop of the webbing it never used its hide or dug just made its own hide tunnels in the webbing along the sub.
 

Blueandbluer

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the gbb i had would have just webbed all the dcoration in there and then sat calm as you please. ontop of the webbing it never used its hide or dug just made its own hide tunnels in the webbing along the sub.
Yeah, that's what I said above... looks great but the spider's gonna trash it.
 

Irithyllian

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After reading all the comments I suppose I’ll have to remove some bits of the foliage and such, thanks guys
 

Irithyllian

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I redid the enclosure and let it sit for a while and now it still seems uninterested in the hide still, even though I tightened and covered it more, I took down most of the plants and removed the moist substrate.

It looks more barren but I was told on this post they like it that way, any thoughts? 19742DE9-BE9B-4AF2-8E65-7AB365A6C75E.jpeg
8FF1B114-A29B-46A3-9839-6E2B958CCA45.jpeg
 

sasker

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GBB's behave differently from most Ts. They make their own hide, so it is not necessary to provide one. Just provide enough anchor points and your tarantula does the rest. If it were me, I would not use such big slabs of cork bark. Instead, I would use sticks as thick as your finger, maybe a bit thinner and place them crisscross, corner to corner, in the enclosure, with large openings between them. Have a look at how they live in the wild, as @viper69 mentioned, and let the enclosure dry out, like @Chris LXXIX said.
 

Irithyllian

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GBB's behave differently from most Ts. They make their own hide, so it is not necessary to provide one. Just provide enough anchor points and your tarantula does the rest. If it were me, I would not use such big slabs of cork bark. Instead, I would use sticks as thick as your finger, maybe a bit thinner and place them crisscross, corner to corner, in the enclosure, with large openings between them. Have a look at how they live in the wild, as @viper69 mentioned, and let the enclosure dry out, like @Chris LXXIX said.
Anchor points, got it, and I did it told me the first time the area was tropical that’s why I had the initial setup but maybe their specific location is a little different but okay I’ll do that
 

Jess S

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My Gbb in its corkbatk hide. The pointy thing on top was fake foliage, now completely webbed over! The little guy dug and used webbing to make several entrances into the hide, but this is the main entrance.

PXL_20210520_220754334.jpg
 

ApexApinkPanda

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I really like your enclosure! Wonderful job. So far I've noticed every time I design a place for a burrow... they burrow anywhere, but where I put it.
 

KaroKoenig

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My GBB never cared for the dug-in corkbark hide I provided for her. She went in once while exploring after I initially housed her and never went back. I think they prefer making their own hides in places where they can build two or more exits. I have had good experience with a sort of dome structure made of branches and roots (varying thickness). Something like this:

20210506_103701.jpg

She immediately started to web up inside that "dome", which is in the center back of the enclosure. Another experience I made: They don't particularly like walking or sitting on bare substrate. I added large dry leaves and some small flat pieces of bark to the bottom of the hide. She seems to be much less reluctant to web those up instead of loose substrate.
This is her new enclosure. In the old one, I had substrate with a significant amount of coco fibre (maybe 50%), and she absolutely hated walking on that stuff - and it WAS packed down as hard as possible. This time, it's self-collected forest topsoil, to which I added crushed lumps of clay (lile pea-sized). I then sprayed the whole ground with water and let that dry out again completely before rehousing her. The effect is pretty cool: the clay lumps slightly dissolve and sort of connect with the looser topsoil. Makes the ground much more stable without making a concrete crust out of it. And I like the way it looks. You can see the patches of clay (bright brown) in the foreground of this picture, which I took a few minutes ago.

20210527_103148[1].jpg

Oh, and before everyone gets a heart attack: that moss contains the same amount of moisture as the rest of the enclosure: zero. I have collected the moss in the forest as well, and I have learned that it actually retains the rich green colour for a very long time when dried-out.
 

Neonblizzard

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I agree, T's like to be able to squeeze into little spots to feel safe, that's why i just bury cork bark and dig a little bit out underneath and let them do the rest.

This is why i don't like the plant pot thing people do, coconuts or shop bought hides, they're just too open on the inside and the T will almost never use it because of this.
 
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