First Problem

Rookie

Arachnoknight
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Aug 16, 2002
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It has started already. I think I need a substrate change. My G Pulchra hasn't moved from the sides of the jar since he got here. he moves across the substrate to attach himself to the other side of the jar. Should I give him a little more time (he's only been here a few hours), or should I switch up his substrate to another combination? I thought he'd be burrowing by now..
The Rookie
 

Code Monkey

Arachnoemperor
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Originally posted by Rookie
It has started already. I think I need a substrate change. My G Pulchra hasn't moved from the sides of the jar since he got here. he moves across the substrate to attach himself to the other side of the jar. Should I give him a little more time (he's only been here a few hours), or should I switch up his substrate to another combination? I thought he'd be burrowing by now..
The Rookie
Take a deep breath, relax, and go grab a bite to eat or a smoke or whatever rings your bell and forget about this little issue. A sling in a vial may never burrow. I've got a G. pulchra about the size of yours, it has never shown the first inclination at moving even a speck of dirt around.

If your sling wants to burrow, it will. If it doesn't, it won't.

Second point: hours? Other than feeding, T's operate on a much slower schedule than you or I. If *days* from now your sling hasn't settled you can start to consider substrate changes (although consider should be the end of it ;). All changing the substrate is going to is stress the little bug out even more.
 

Rookie

Arachnoknight
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slippery

Thanks CM. Once again, you've helped me realize when a mountain was actually a mole hill.
he keeps falling off though? it's like he's drunk. he'll crawl up the side of the jar, and then he slips off, rights himself, and starts crawling again.
The Rookie
 

Botar

Arachnoprince
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Rookie,

Quit watching him. It's actually bad for them if you watch them too much. (OK, so it's a lie. It'll give him a little relief though. Back me up on this one.)

Botar

PS- Rookie, don't read what's in the ( ) above.
 

Rookie

Arachnoknight
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Okay, okay

Alright, I get it. I'll take it easy for a bit. It's hard not to get nervous though. How do you guys stay so calm? He looks so....fragile. Anyway, I'll stop being such a worrisome parent for a bit and let nature (in a jar) take its course.
Thanks guys,
Paul
 

Botar

Arachnoprince
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Rookie,

Don't worry, I'm the same way. It helps knowing that the more you do to it, the more chances there will be to screw something up. The way I've solved my problem of "over parenting" is by getting more slings. I've got about 20 slings now. That way, there usually really is something to do. Seems there is always someone to feed, dead or unwanted food to remove, or an exuvium to remove. That ought to really get you going.

Botar
 

Gail

Arachnopixie
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I have to agree with Botar and Code Monkey here - just beathe deep and find that happy place. I had the same reaction to my first tiny slings back at the beginning of this year. Prior to that I had only kept adults or near adults. I got a 1" white knee and a 1/4" Chilean Copper freebie with it from Kelly Swift - I was in a panic - they looked so delicate - especially that tiny 1/4" Chilean Copper - I was sure it would die on me. Poor Kelly, God bless him, was really patient with me when I emailed him several times all worried about how to care for them, and asking how delicate they were. I was so nervous that I had the shakes when I'd go to open the tiniest one's vial - which made me drop it about 4 feet to the carpet. It was fine - little rumpled, but fine. And that's when I realized that the babies aren't as delicate as they look. Just make sure you keep the humidity OK and decent heat - never below 70, preferably 78 to 85. The White Knee is now over 6" and the Chilean Copper is 1.5" and I have a whole lot more tiny babies. Once you get comfortable with them you realize how much fun they are to raise and you'll want more :D :D

Gail

PS - I don't recommend dropping any babies 4 feet to the carpet, no matter how tough they may be - and you NEVER NEVER want to drop a larger spider even a few inches or you may well kill it.
 

King_Looey

Arachnoprimate
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Thanks for the tip. I had better cancel the local Tarantula bungy jumping weekend then. Thats a shame.
 

Tranz

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I got a 1 1/4" G. Pulchra two weeks ago. It is my first spider. It didn't move at all for three hours - it laid against the side of the keeper. After 3 hours, I dropped in a small cricket, which it quickly caught, returned to the same place, and stayed to consume. The next morning, it had built an impressive wall in front of a plastic 1 1/8" chair tip that I had partially buried in the substrate, and it was deep inside that. It stayed there, in that same position, for almost 4 days. The crickets I put in kind of wandered in there and never came out. I've found that there is evidence of activity done during the night - for they are nocturnal creatures.

Sometimes it is frozen in the same position I left it 12 hours earlier. Once I moved aside its wall because I was sure it was dead inside the chair tip, but I had to remind myself that they're only dead if their legs are curled up under. Only in the last 2 days has it begun to really dig and move earth, but still prefers its man-made burrow. Keep in mind G. Pulchras are "opportunistic burrowers": they would rather adapt to an existing burrow or structure than build one from scratch.

One thing I would advise you to not do is project onto the spider feelings that you associate with other pets, based on how you think it's acting. It may seem to act bored, resentful, desperate, or depressed - but in reality it's just being a little spider.
 
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Rookie

Arachnoknight
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chair tip?

Hey Tranz,
I'm curious; what do you mean by a 'chair tip'? I do know the situation with oppurtunistic burrows, and I want to stick something in his babyfood jar that he can turn into a shelter. That's why I'm curious about this chair tip, so please fill me in. Do you have any pictures of your s'ling setup?
Does anyone else have a suggestion for a pre-burrow for my little G.Pulchra.
 
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King_Looey

Arachnoprimate
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This is how i got my curly hair to burrow.

Push your finger, at an angle, into the substrate, not too deep, you must be able to see the bottom. Now wait for your spider to find it. He will then improve on it.
 

Tranz

Arachnobaron
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Sling Setup

My spiderling is bigger than yours, but I'm not sure by how much. Its body is 3/4", and with its legs a good 1 1/4", and more if stretched out. I got what I think is called a "Kritter Keeper", but I'm not sure. It's plastic, round, and a little over 4 inches in diameter at the top, and less as you near the bottom. It's on a silly "stand", like a brandy glass, but I carefully sawed this thing off with a serrated kitchen knife, which took a little while. Without the "stand", it is more stable and makes better contact with a heating pad.

The keeper has a very secure top which is a little hard to take off. The top is kind of a dense colored plastic grill (mine is blue-green), which the spider hangs upside down on with no problem (its legs never get caught). The keeper is on a heating pad which is on a small flat cardboard box, 1/2" high, (to protect the wicker from the heating pad, but I don't think it's even necessary). These are on the low shelf of a small round wicker table located well away from windows, with a "peace lilly" beside of it that shelters any stray sunlight.

In the keeper itself, I put 3 to 4 inches of Jungle Mix, which I got at a local petstore with a decent reptile section. I found at True Value Hardware a package of 4 black vinyl chair leg tips, the kind you put on the leg-ends of metal folding chairs. These tips are shaped like cylinders and made of PVC. One end is closed and blunt, and the other end open. They are 1 1/8" in diameter and somewhat longer in length. I put the blunt end of one tip against the side of the keeper and burried it less than halfway, very slightly angeling it upward to approximate a burrow. I think you could use a shot glass for the same effect, but it should ideally be made of black glass. I worry about the vinyl in the chair tip giving off toxins, but I've got some cork bark on order that I'll try to saw to approximate the size and shape.

The shelf is only a few inches above the carpet, and sometimes I place the keeper on the carpet if I need to attend to it. It never gets but a few inches off the floor, and never carried around, or placed in traffic or where something could fall on it.

The spider loves the chair tip, sleeps deep inside for 3 days, and then hangs around outside for 3 days. Sometimes it sits just inside the tip, waiting for prey to pass by.

When the spider is inside I spray the substrate with a plant mister about 3 times a day, but only if the water can't hit the spider, which really startles him. Lately, I've been carefully misting just one side of the keeper, making sure beads of water form on the sides.

Gradually, over a few days, the subtrate absorbs water and turns dark. When I feel the temp might go below 70 degrees, especially at night, I turn the head pad on low. You can then see a clear ring of condensation just below the soil line. Lately I've not been keeping the keeper so damp, and I find that this has encouraged the spider to move earth.

I feed it one small brown cricket once every other day. These I get from a pet store/bait shop for a dollar for one dozen. I keep them in a tamale jar with holes punched in the lid in a cabinet. Every few days I replace a small piece of banana in the jar. These crickets vary from 1/3 to well over 1/2 inch in size. I've fed it seven in two weeks, and have found no spare cricket parts anywhere.

I keep a pen light close by to view the spider. I try to make all movements slow and deliberate and try not to jar the keeper.
 
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atavuss

Arachnoprince
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Re: chair tip?

Originally posted by Rookie
Hey Tranz,
I'm curious; what do you mean by a 'chair tip'? I do know the situation with oppurtunistic burrows, and I want to stick something in his babyfood jar that he can turn into a shelter. That's why I'm curious about this chair tip, so please fill me in. Do you have any pictures of your s'ling setup?
Does anyone else have a suggestion for a pre-burrow for my little G.Pulchra.
I have 7 g. pulchras. one is an adult female, she does not use her half coconut hide nor does she burrow.....always sitting out in the open. my juv 4" male has a hole he dug right in the middle of his medium kritter keeper-he sits in the hole. the rest are 1.5" to 2" juvs of which about half have dug a hole/burrow.....the rest sit out in the open. I use forest bed (ground up coconut husks) as substrate, the substrate is kept bone dry and there is a full water dish in each enclosure.
Ed
 
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