First T. What species should I get?

LeadedCactus83

Arachnopeon
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Mar 5, 2017
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I'm looking into purchasing my very first tarantula but I'm stuck between three species at different sizes and care requirements.
A 1" Grammastola Pulchra, 2" Brachypelma Albopilosum, and finally, a 3" Brachypelma Vagans.
My main worry with the Pulchra is that it's a baby and I have no experience with Ts period let alone slings that need very specific requirements. But I really want this one because I know it's a tough animal and absolutely beautiful when it reaches maturity.
The Vagans is the next option since she is nearly a full adult and will be more forgiving if I mess up the husbandry. But the thing that's throwing me off the most is the conflicting info I've read about their humidity requirements since I live in a semi arid climate. My house is a standard 24° C, humidity is around 35% to 40% and I'm afraid a water dish won't be enough to keep her comfortable.
The Albopilosum is the safe choice but she isn't the most exciting of the three, and she's only a juvie.
Does anyone have any insight on which of these would be the best for me? I'm not set on handling, so that doesn't matter to me. Also, any advice on taking good care of these beasties would be appreciated. While I wouldn't want all three at once, I might get another one of these species at a later date.
Thanks. ~Cactus
 
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Haksilence

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Best bet is the albopilosum or vagans.
They are considerably cheaper and the sizes they are at puts them as juveniles/subadults, which will be substantially more lenient to husbandry mistakes.

Don't undersell vagans and albopilosum, just because they are common doesn't mean they are boring, albopilosum in particular has the potential to be quite attractive as they are just about the only species with their distinct setea and black with blond hair combo. IMG_20160814_094948.jpg
 

Jeff23

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All three of those are fine choices. Grammastola pulchripes is another good one to get if you see it available. Husbandry on all of these is a piece of cake if you follow advice on this board and ignore all care sheets on websites. You will be fine in a dry climate.

Once a tarantula gets past 1.5" or so the moisture "requirements" for Brachypelma and Grammastola are gone beyond having a constantly filled water dish. Some people do provide limited moisture in the substrate for some of them but it is subjective to opinion rather than a requirement after the sling gets big enough.

Do not handle any tarantula. They don't like it. Chances are high that it will fall at some point and sustain a fatal injury.

EDIT* Do you know if the Brachypelma albopilosum you are examining is Honduran or Nicaraguan variety?
 

nicodimus22

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I'm looking into purchasing my very first tarantula but I'm stuck between three species at different sizes and care requirements.
A 1" Grammastola Pulchra, 2" Brachypelma Albopilosum, and finally, a 3" Brachypelma Vagans.
My main worry with the Pulchra is that it's a baby and I have no experience with Ts period let alone slings that need very specific requirements. But I really want this one because I know it's a tough animal and absolutely beautiful when it reaches maturity.
If you're limited to these three specimens, I would get the G. pulchra. A sling at 1" is well on its way...and this is basically a bulletproof species anyway. At 1" you can feed it live prey and give it a bottle cap water dish, and the only difference in care compared to an adult is that you'll want to keep one corner on the moist side until it reaches about 1.5-2 inches. I raised one from a 1/4 inch sling (my second T) and it was easy after it could take down live prey. Absolutely stunning adult.

View media item 38688View media item 38687
 
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Ungoliant

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A 1" Grammastola Pulchra, 2" Brachypelma Albopilosum, and finally, a 3" Brachypelma Vagans.
My main worry with the Pulchra is that it's a baby and I have no experience with Ts period let alone slings that need very specific requirements. But I really want this one because I know it's a tough animal and absolutely beautiful when it reaches maturity.
All of those species are suitable for beginners, so it's mainly a matter of personal preference and budget.

If your heart is set on the pulchra (I love mine), and you're willing to pay for it, go for it.

Normally, for first-time keepers, we recommend juveniles (2" or larger) or adults, as they are hardier than slings, and many beginner-friendly species are slow growers. However, a larger pulchra can be quite expensive (I paid $50 for a 0.75" and $80 for a 2"), so a sling might be your best option for that species. (The 0.75" pulchra was my first sling and first terrestrial, and it gave me no trouble.)

Sling care is different from adult care, but it is not rocket science. See this post on basic sling care. Searching Arachnoboards for species + sling should help you find specific care advice. Feel free to ask questions too.
 
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LeadedCactus83

Arachnopeon
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Mar 5, 2017
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All three of those are fine choices. Grammastola pulchripes is another good one to get if you see it available. Husbandry on all of these is a piece of cake if you follow advice on this board and ignore all care sheets on websites. You will be fine in a dry climate.

Once a tarantula gets past 1.5" or so the moisture "requirements" for Brachypelma and Grammastola are gone beyond having a constantly filled water dish. Some people do provide limited moisture in the substrate for some of them but it is subjective to opinion rather than a requirement after the sling gets big enough.

Do not handle any tarantula. They don't like it. Chances are high that it will fall at some point and sustain a fatal injury.

EDIT* Do you know if the Brachypelma albopilosum you are examining is Honduran or Nicaraguan variety?
Honduran
 

LeadedCactus83

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Best bet is the albopilosum or vagans.
They are considerably cheaper and the sizes they are at puts them as juveniles/subadults, which will be substantially more lenient to husbandry mistakes.

Don't undersell vagans and albopilosum, just because they are common doesn't mean they are boring, albopilosum in particular has the potential to be quite attractive as they are just about the only species with their distinct setea and black with blond hair combo. View attachment 233218
I don't think they're boring. That's why they're my top three contenders lol. I just think the Albopilpsum isn't as exotic looking as the Pulchra and Vagans
 
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Jeff23

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The Honduran form will look different than the picture in Post #2.

In my experience (which is only 6 months) my Grammastola genus tarantulas have been much more active and less skittish than my Brachypelma tarantulas. I own pulchra and pulchripes. But I still love my Brachypelma tarantulas as well. They are all good.
 

LeadedCactus83

Arachnopeon
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All of those species are suitable for beginners, so it's mainly a matter of personal preference and budget.

If your heart is set on the pulchra (I love mine), and you're willing to pay for it, go for it.

Normally, for first-time keepers, we recommend juveniles (2" or larger) or adults, as they are hardier than slings, and many beginner-friendly species are slow growers. However, a larger pulchra can be quite expensive (I paid $50 for a 0.75" and $80 for a 2"), so a sling might be your best option for that species. (The 0.75" pulchra was my first sling and first terrestrial, and it gave me no trouble.)

Sling care is different from adult care, but it is not rocket science. See this post on basic sling care. Searching Arachnoboards for species + sling should help you find specific care advice. Feel free to ask questions too.
Thank you for the link. That's helped put my mind at ease about possibly taking care of a sling. The cost isn't the worst thing. 1" slings are about $60 to $65 CAD. I don't think that's terrible for a pet that will live for 10 to 20 years
 

nicodimus22

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Thank you for the link. That's helped put my mind at ease about possibly taking care of a sling. The cost isn't the worst thing. 1" slings are about $60 to $65 CAD. I don't think that's terrible for a pet that will live for 10 to 20 years
If you get a female, yes. Males mature in 3-5 years depending on feeding frequency and temperature, and then live a short life. But they are still worth a decent amount to a breeder, so you could get new Ts out of it if you got a male. That's how I got some of my recent acquisitions. I don't regret owning him, though. It was fun.
 

Haksilence

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The Honduran variety, the "hobby form" won't be quite as attractive. They tend to have slightly less contrasting coloration and tend to not be as "fluffy"

As far as the Grammostola vs brachypelma I can agree to some degree. I find my Grammostola to be far less active, but also far more complacent. My brachypelma tend to be more on the active side, but also seem to be more temperamental (with the exception of albopilosum, they tend to be very relaxed species while still being reasonably active)
 

LeadedCactus83

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Stop worrying about humidity, stop reading care sheets. Care sheets kill tarantulas. Get the pulchra. No sane or knowledgeable T owner worries about humidity specific numbers.
Like I said, I'm new to the hobby. I don't know these things. That's why I'm here, asking questions where experienced people can give me polite answers and advice.
 

Moakmeister

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Oh a guy who wants suggestions on his first tarantula?
MWAHAHAHAHAHAHA
Join the G. pulchripes side. We can destroy the Brachypelmas. They have forseen this. It is your destiny. Join us, and together, we can rule the tarantula hobby with our yellow-kneed spiders.
Come with me.
It is the only way.
 

WeightedAbyss75

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I'd get the vagans. Out of all of those species, none of them need any humidity. Btw, don't fret over that like others are saying. Even for the most humid species, they can tolerate quite a range a lot of the time. Not anything to worry about with those 3. If you worry about the sling stage, I'd go for the vagans. Great species, pretty big size too. If it's anything like my emelia, then it should be pretty active snd fun to watch. The pulchra will take a really long time to grow into anything sizable. And they are a little fragile in the sling stage, especially when it can take months to years to reach 3"+. Never owned one, but that's what I've heard. Love any Brachy's, they are pretty active and great display T's. With vagans, just a water dish and dry sub will work fine. I believe they are fro a really dry climate, so a water dish will do fine for such a big T :D
 

Crone Returns

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Best bet is the albopilosum or vagans.
They are considerably cheaper and the sizes they are at puts them as juveniles/subadults, which will be substantially more lenient to husbandry mistakes.

Don't undersell vagans and albopilosum, just because they are common doesn't mean they are boring, albopilosum in particular has the potential to be quite attractive as they are just about the only species with their distinct setea and black with blond hair combo. View attachment 233218
Wow! Where'd you find that little beauty?
 

Crone Returns

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I don't think they're boring. That's why they're my top three contenders lol. I just think the Albopilpsum isn't as exotic looking as the Pulchra and Vagans
Ha! You should see my 0.1.0 Brachypelma albopilosum do her grooming and her happy dance and rocking back and forth and up and down.... She has plenty of goofy personality and many tricks, some of which I've taught her with operant conditioning.

:troll:Just joking about training her to do tricks.
 

draiko

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I started with a vagans. Still enjoy him the most. He's always out. Always busy. Never skips a meal. Its been a year and i love him to bits.
 

KezyGLA

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Thrixopelma cyaneolum

A colorful, long lived, gentle, active and easy to care for new world terrestrial species. I have never seen one throw a threat or kick hairs. The dont break the bank either. Out of every species I have kept, this seems to be the most beginner friendly.

Hopefully others that own one may validate what I have mentioned.
 

Jeff23

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The Honduran variety, the "hobby form" won't be quite as attractive. They tend to have slightly less contrasting coloration and tend to not be as "fluffy"

As far as the Grammostola vs brachypelma I can agree to some degree. I find my Grammostola to be far less active, but also far more complacent. My brachypelma tend to be more on the active side, but also seem to be more temperamental (with the exception of albopilosum, they tend to be very relaxed species while still being reasonably active)
^^^^ This may be true more often for adult tarantulas. I am not sure. I based my comments on slings. All of my Brachypelma slings are burrowing while my Grammostola slings are staying out in the open. My adult Brachy's are not real active or skittish, but I don't own any adult Grammostola.
 
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