First Handling?

Crazasta

Arachnopeon
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Jul 28, 2010
Messages
7
I just bought my P. imperator yesterday. I've handled her once before buying her and she's my first scorpion. Although we had a 40 min drive home and I'm not sure about the stress that may put on a scorpion. For almost all of last night she was walking around after I turned the lamp off. She's been here for just a night now and I was wondering when it would be a good time to try and pick her up.
 

Vidaro

Arachnobaron
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Aug 12, 2008
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Meaningless handling is not the best you can do for your pet, so no1 will recomend it unless there is a reason for it.
Let her run arround the tank a couple of days untill she decides where to settle in.make sure to provide a hide,(i usually just throw a log in or something and let the scorpion decide how deep under she wants to go).
 

Crazasta

Arachnopeon
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Jul 28, 2010
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yeah. I bought her from a guy who handled her very frequently, usually once a day. And she was used to him, only stung people twice in the year he's had her. And she's got a hide and all. I thought the best thing for her would be to just let her get settled, but yeah when I held her she seemed docile, uncertain about me so she was in an arching position at first, but docile. I don't think I'd be handling her every day but I'd rather be comfortable with this pet and be able to handle her on occasion. At the moment she's sitting in a corner and hasn't moved for a while.
 

Vidaro

Arachnobaron
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Allthough i wont tell you to handle them or not, wether you handle her once a month or everyday doesn't really matter IMHO, she doesnt recognise you either.
2 times in 1 year? ive had my emps for about 4 without ever beeing stung.. and i used to handle them alot:p
 

gromgrom

Arachnoprince
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inverts never get "used" to being handled. snakes do, but alot of that comes from generations of captive born behavior. we cant change instincts of these animals.

that being said, you should let her settle in for a week.
 

Crazasta

Arachnopeon
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Jul 28, 2010
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Alright, really I'm bound to handle her whenever I ultimately decide to, I don't need to all the time, but I'd rather not have just a display pet. I think when she gets more comfortable in her new home she'll be just as tame as where I bought her from, but I'd just like to know some recommendations on when it would be BETTER to handle her, less stressful for her, less likely for her to feel the need to defend, stuff like that.
 

Nomadinexile

Arachnoking
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Early evening is best imo. When the sun goes down, (it's dark in it's cage), because it will be awake most likely. I would use as small of light as you can to illuminate it's cage.

Then I would take something like an empty tea box with one side ripped off, and scoot it into the box. Then sit on the floor and let it walk onto you from the box.

keep it low to the ground in case it falls off. And just act like a tree. Most stings would happen when you try to grab it.
 

saxman146

Arachnobaron
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"Alright, really I'm bound to handle her whenever I ultimately decide to, I don't need to all the time, but I'd rather not have just a display pet."

Better stick to emps then.
 

Crazasta

Arachnopeon
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Early evening is best imo. When the sun goes down, (it's dark in it's cage), because it will be awake most likely. I would use as small of light as you can to illuminate it's cage.

Then I would take something like an empty tea box with one side ripped off, and scoot it into the box. Then sit on the floor and let it walk onto you from the box.

keep it low to the ground in case it falls off. And just act like a tree. Most stings would happen when you try to grab it.
Yeah, the guy I bought it from told me to make sure to be still when handling it. And since it's a scorpion, I expected that sudden quick movements would be a bad idea.

"Alright, really I'm bound to handle her whenever I ultimately decide to, I don't need to all the time, but I'd rather not have just a display pet."

Better stick to emps then.
Yeah, I'll be sticking to the less aggressive species.
 

Vidaro

Arachnobaron
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Also keep in mind that emps are big n heavy so they dont have a good grip on you.keep it close to your fingers so you have better control.
 

cacoseraph

ArachnoGod
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inverts never get "used" to being handled. snakes do, but alot of that comes from generations of captive born behavior. we cant change instincts of these animals.

that being said, you should let her settle in for a week.
holy crap. wrong wrong wrong. just about every higher bug i have played with over long periods of time (say greater than a month) with good frequency (say, at least every third or fourth day) has gotten used to it. and since i sometimes play with stuff i definitely don't want to get tagged by i am paying attn to all their behavioral queues.

scorpions seem to be about middle of the road for adapting to handling. tarantulas seem to be much smarter about it and centipedes seem least able to get used to it, if at all.

how to tell your bugs are getting used to being handled? it is easiest to see the change when you start with a bug that does NOT "want" to be handled. they will exhibit defensive behavior and constantly try to get away. they will always move away from you in their cage, too (unless they are trying to tag you). as they get used to it they will become less defensive towards you... and possibly even voluntarily move onto your hand after a while. another indicator that a bug is cool with you handling it is when they groom themselves while you are handling them. i love watching them do that :) if i ever get a really defensive "smart" bug again i will do a video log or something to show what i mean :)


i have scorpions i have caught that used to light me up whenever i would scoop them out of their cage... but they settled down to almost voluntarily walking onto my hand after a few months of playing with them. no defensive behavior and they even tended to become less skittish around my hand/fingers inside their cage. amusingly, i have had scorpions birth out babies a day or two after i played with them (and have also had a tarantula start to make an eggsac a day or two after i played with it ). in all those cases the babies developed normally :)





i hate when ppl don't think bugs can learn or become habituated to stuff. even worms can learn to solve a simple maze... and i submit that our bugs are a leeetle more evolved and thus "smart" than worms :)
 

NevularScorpion

Arachnoangel
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holy crap. wrong wrong wrong. just about every higher bug i have played with over long periods of time (say greater than a month) with good frequency (say, at least every third or fourth day) has gotten used to it. and since i sometimes play with stuff i definitely don't want to get tagged by i am paying attn to all their behavioral queues.

scorpions seem to be about middle of the road for adapting to handling. tarantulas seem to be much smarter about it and centipedes seem least able to get used to it, if at all.

how to tell your bugs are getting used to being handled? it is easiest to see the change when you start with a bug that does NOT "want" to be handled. they will exhibit defensive behavior and constantly try to get away. they will always move away from you in their cage, too (unless they are trying to tag you). as they get used to it they will become less defensive towards you... and possibly even voluntarily move onto your hand after a while. another indicator that a bug is cool with you handling it is when they groom themselves while you are handling them. i love watching them do that :) if i ever get a really defensive "smart" bug again i will do a video log or something to show what i mean :)


i have scorpions i have caught that used to light me up whenever i would scoop them out of their cage... but they settled down to almost voluntarily walking onto my hand after a few months of playing with them. no defensive behavior and they even tended to become less skittish around my hand/fingers inside their cage. amusingly, i have had scorpions birth out babies a day or two after i played with them (and have also had a tarantula start to make an eggsac a day or two after i played with it ). in all those cases the babies developed normally :)





i hate when ppl don't think bugs can learn or become habituated to stuff. even worms can learn to solve a simple maze... and i submit that our bugs are a leeetle more evolved and thus "smart" than worms :)

I second him to everything he said base from my own personal experience. also you have to take in account that someday you will be tag if you handle inverts. No one is perfect and accidents happen :)
 
Last edited:

Nomadinexile

Arachnoking
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Yeah, the guy I bought it from told me to make sure to be still when handling it. And since it's a scorpion, I expected that sudden quick movements would be a bad idea.
Be still, but you need to keep your free hand moving. I keep it close and ready. Because my emps used to walk right off my hand flipping over. They can barely hold on, and would often use the back of their metasoma to push off my palm and flip back over in the "lower" hand. Then I would move the hand it just walked off, and put it back underneath. Know what I mean? But the arm/hand it's on, should stay pretty still. And don't worry if it flips over, it won't go stinger first, that would be really silly, because they could break it off, so they roll it in and use the back meta. And again, keep it close to the ground just in case. :)
 

Falk

Arachnodemon
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cacoseraph are you serious? Do you really think theraphosids get used to being handled just because they dont get defensive?
 

Nomadinexile

Arachnoking
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cacoseraph are you serious? Do you really think theraphosids get used to being handled just because they dont get defensive?
He can answer your question for himself, but I agree with him. I think scorpions and T's at least, get the idea you aren't a threat. Doesn't mean your their buddy or anything. But they get you aren't a predator, and just go with the flow. Whereas when you collect a wild one, it is not okay, it freaks out. Handle them a few times, and they stop freaking out. I've had scorpions put up a heck of fight during collection, then shortly be really calm. I've also seen that with some tarantulas, but I don't know as much and have less experience with them.

It may just be humans that they are used to. I don't know if there would be a difference if it were another person comfortable with them, or if they can tell between people, but I think they relax around people in time.
 

cacoseraph

ArachnoGod
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cacoseraph are you serious? Do you really think theraphosids get used to being handled just because they dont get defensive?
of course. they become habituated to it, lose habituation over periods of time not handled. the longer the time between handlings, the more regression to previous states. bugs that did everything in their power to not be handled grew to accept it over time. some of the spiders that used to take ~30 minutes of wrangling to handle eventually would VOLUNTARILY walk onto my hand after they become habituated. i'm talking about spiders that would not set foot on my skin, literally... eventually voluntarily walking on to me. but if i didn't handle them for a couple months they would become harder to get to walk on me... but a few handling sessions in relatively close temporal proximity and they were back to sweethearts again.

i am not really sure how you can otherwise define that, except for getting used to being handled :)


as i said, scorpions exhibit similar habituation, but not to as strong of a degree.


essentially i think it has to do with detuning their predator avoidance reflexes. as they experience conditions which *could* lead to their injury or demise in the wild (i.e. a large, CO2 exhaler picking them up usually means they are about to be eaten.... says millions of years of evolution) but which do not lead to harm they can slowly and primitively learn that this particular situation is no threat to them


i should be getting a real crabby spider pretty soon... i will make videos of me handlebreaking it :)
 

BAM1082

Arachnoknight
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Jun 10, 2010
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Seems very logical to me.

I tend to favor the idea that all creatures are mainly just a set of learned behaviors.
 

Crazasta

Arachnopeon
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I agree with cacoseraph. I don't have much experience with inverts but just when I bought my scorpion she would be completely fine on her original owner's hand, but she'd arch up and get defensive on mine. Even if they don't get "used" to handling, they certainly do seem like they learn you.
 

Falk

Arachnodemon
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of course. they become habituated to it, lose habituation over periods of time not handled. the longer the time between handlings, the more regression to previous states. bugs that did everything in their power to not be handled grew to accept it over time. some of the spiders that used to take ~30 minutes of wrangling to handle eventually would VOLUNTARILY walk onto my hand after they become habituated. i'm talking about spiders that would not set foot on my skin, literally... eventually voluntarily walking on to me. but if i didn't handle them for a couple months they would become harder to get to walk on me... but a few handling sessions in relatively close temporal proximity and they were back to sweethearts again.

i am not really sure how you can otherwise define that, except for getting used to being handled :)


as i said, scorpions exhibit similar habituation, but not to as strong of a degree.


essentially i think it has to do with detuning their predator avoidance reflexes. as they experience conditions which *could* lead to their injury or demise in the wild (i.e. a large, CO2 exhaler picking them up usually means they are about to be eaten.... says millions of years of evolution) but which do not lead to harm they can slowly and primitively learn that this particular situation is no threat to them


i should be getting a real crabby spider pretty soon... i will make videos of me handlebreaking it :)
I dont belive they get used to it but im not going to discuss it because there is already a thread about it.
 

Crazasta

Arachnopeon
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I dont belive they get used to it but im not going to discuss it because there is already a thread about it.
And not to be an ass but this thread was originally about recommendations and helping me out. haha
 
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