"Free Range" arboreals in the home?

kimski

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Well, Zippy, a "1 1/2" A. versi, somehow squeezed through the slender slots in her new Kritter Keeper. Guess I fell for the 'she's secure in her new digs' trap because I put a brass planter on top of the lid; not realizing just what escape artists they really are!)

Fortunately, I have trailing ivy all over my master bathroom about 13 feet up all along the ceiling and walls.

She's up there in the crevace where the ceiling meets the wall now; building a web on the braided english ivy and I've devised an H20 dish that will protrude from the wall on a bamboo branch; I squirted the wall way away from her to give her some humidity this a.m. and she seems quite content.

My question is: Does anyone out there have any 'free range' arboreals in their home? I remember a picture on the webs last year of a guy who had an arboreal living on a plant in his kitchen. (I don't have time to search the forums right now; so please don't flame me for not searching)

I plan on keeping her there for now; she's settled in nicely; I'll have an H20 dish up; and will devise a feeding station. I am the only occupant in a 500 sq. ft. Master suite. It's clean and quiet; I don't use chemicals to clean and there is a lot - way lot - of plants and vines all over the top of the room stretching all over the bathroom like a jungle. (Pics. to follow)

Let me know if you have any "Free Range" arboreals and how it's working for you. Thanks and take care, Kim Ski
 
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cacoseraph

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it's probably not a great idea to keep her free range

aside from the risks to the avic you are putting native bugs at risk by keeping them less segregated from your exotic than possible. i am a big opponent of needlessly/carelessly risking native species. <edit lol, i read my post and it sounds like i am worried about the avic eating natives... i mean i am worried about spreading some "disease" to the natives>

especially considering you live in a part of the country with native tarantulas i would say the risks are too great


now... i *have* seen some pretty ingenious ways of attaching cages to a wall or ceiling... *that* would give you almost everything you get from having it freerange and drop risks to the avic and native fauna back down to "normal"
 

kimski

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Hi and thanks for the reply. I'm sorry - I'm not clear on what you meant about the 'native bugs'. Did you mean 'bugs' - like in insects or 'native bugs' like in native tarantulas. And I wasn't clear about the spreading of disease to the natives. Can you clarify? Thanks a bunch.

I have an A. versicolor - not a Californian native tarantula. The avic is now webbing on ivy on the ceiling of my bathroom way up high... This is a vast potted English Ivy plant that has runners up to about 10 - 12 feet long trailing all over my bathroom walls and ceilings. I will have to show a picutre so you can see it.

Thanks for the input! Kim SKi
 

cacoseraph

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Hi and thanks for the reply. I'm sorry - I'm not clear on what you meant about the 'native bugs'. Did you mean 'bugs' - like in insects or 'native bugs' like in native tarantulas. And I wasn't clear about the spreading of disease to the natives. Can you clarify? Thanks a bunch.

I have an A. versicolor - not a Californian native tarantula. The avic is now webbing on ivy on the ceiling of my bathroom way up high... This is a vast potted English Ivy plant that has runners up to about 10 - 12 feet long trailing all over my bathroom walls and ceilings. I will have to show a picutre so you can see it.

Thanks for the input! Kim SKi

here i am using bugs to mean invertebrates, including specifcally spiders and other arachnids

on spreading of disease... basically local bugs like, co-evolve or whatever you want to say to deal adequately well with local "bug diseases", including parasites, actual germs, nematodes, etc... it is not *that* likely that a local disease will wipe out a local species of bigger bugs.... BUT where you run into problems is when locals are exposed to exotic diseases. *that* is where you run into HUGE problems in countless cases of bugs and higher animals

think of like, dutch elm disease, for instance... not *that* big a deal in its native land... but it is absolutely gutting forests in North America.

now... the problem with our bugs is that we basically know nothing about invert diseases in the hobby... but surely some exist... i can't believe that *every* time a bug dies before it is old and giant there is a husbandry or like "physical" reason why i croaked. i surmise there are diseases that are flying under the "hobby radar"

the unchecked spread of such a disease could, quite conceivably, end local pocket species and throw whole ecological systems out of whack.... and we don't even know exactly how such a disease could spread

granted, there are a LOT of "coulds", "mights", and "maybes" in there... but hopefully you see what i am getting at


so... when you don't have a bug in a container then it is that much easier for some native spider to come in some form of contact with your exotic and then get back outside... potentially spreading anything it caught from your avic

i readily grant the chance of it happening in any specific case is diminishing small... BUT the chance of it happening once in all cases is significant.... at least it is to me



what might be a better free range experiment would be to find the coolest local spider and let it live in your house... but don't feed it with bought feeders, as that would drive up the infection factor again
 

Drachenjager

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i kno a guy who had free range P. regalis in his house 5 of them lol and you know , he never had any roaches after that lol
 

kimski

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NOW I get it. I'm from New England and Dutch Elm was a killer there! We had a truly beautiful and huge DElm destroyed by that plague. Nice analogy.

And, yeah, I was very (and still am) reluctant to leave her there. I ran home at lunch and she's still there and easily capturable (I use my stepladder to water that English Ivy and the other plants, so I'm always up there).

Right now it's kind of a 'Lively Experiment' (Like our original Rhode Island: that was our state motto in Colonial times!)

When I have time, I'm going to search and look for that guys photos of an avic in his kitchen houseplant. It just looked so cool, ya know.
 

dtknow

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I'd get her if I were you. Especially at that size it could get eaten by something bigger, or go down an air vent.
 

Snipes

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I have a question about the disease thing. How come disease becomes an issue with free range? I would think that many native bugs could be able to get in and out of cages and come into contact with tarantulas.
 

Merfolk

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I have few wildlife around to care about, I would gladly do if I didn't have a cat.

The spider won't leve a place it feels safe in, especialy if the air around is moved by big creatures like us. If it's a male or if it's hungry, it will surely wander....

However, at leat for the first weeks, I would personnaly opt for an enclosure (like if it's near a corner of the ceiling, a triangular piece of plexiglas would dso the trick) for it might want to explore your house if the place doesn't fit.

I woud also wait for the animal to be bigger, yours might indeed get lost.

The only specy I think about for such an experiment would be the cheap and docile A avic, obviously female. Any terrestrial would most likely meet a foot in a never pleasant way. Other arboreals are more likly to meet a finger on the back of a shelf. Once the conditions are correct, if they have build a tube, they would be more reluctant to leave it.

But there always will be some risk to any kind of adventurous experiment like this.
 

cacoseraph

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I have a question about the disease thing. How come disease becomes an issue with free range? I would think that many native bugs could be able to get in and out of cages and come into contact with tarantulas.
well, it is really a question of risk management. technically the safest thing would be for no one to have exotic pets... but i don't really like that option and gleefully acknowledge that i am selfish enough to dismiss it as a real possibility.

so, with risk management in mind you kind of have to think about what goes on in your cages... most cages have fairly small vent holes, and formyself are stacked and roofed by their racks... which seems like it would leave considerably less space for other bugs to get into, then out of the cages.... but no doubt, i have seen other spiders move in with my bugs. usually i kill them. compare this to the level of interaction a freerange spider is goign to have. anyhow, just because some risk is inherent to the hobby doesn't mean we should throw all caution to the wind.

also, i would think a pholcid or theridiid could make mincemeat of a small avic.... depending on circumstances
 

worm's girl

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i'm no expert, but it just sounds dangerous, but maybe i'm not understanding this plant it is clinging to. And that small i would think it would be easy to loose track of, especially if it decides to go exploring during the night and falls in the toilet.. or just falls in general. but i dunno, my luck i would rest my hand against the wall and squish it by accident, but thats cuz i'm incredibly unlucky.
 

xjak3yx

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sounds very interesting . i also would like to see an image . i am only a novice but maybe keep an eye on it and see what happens :) if it looks confortabel and your confortable it being there then it seems ok but also the disease thing is a worrie. you dont want a good T getting ill
 

cacoseraph

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sounds very interesting . i also would like to see an image . i am only a novice but maybe keep an eye on it and see what happens :) if it looks confortabel and your confortable it being there then it seems ok but also the disease thing is a worrie. you dont want a good T getting ill
actually, the main danger in the disease thing is your T getting the local spiders and other bugs ill. to my mind, at any rate.
 

kimski

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Settled in quite nicely

Well, Zippy has settled in quite nicely. She has begun webbing above an ivy leaf. I placed a pre-killed cricket on an adjacent leaf (her 'plate' as it were) and this worked out well. I climb the ladder to finely spray mist the adjacent leaves around her - and just use the squirter on direct stream and spray up and on the next wall to mist when I'm leaving for the morning. I have checked her every day morning - noon - and night (several times a night) since I posted.... she's still there and hasn't budged and has a nice web going.

I realize the dangers of cats; vents; chemicals and whatnot....

This truly is a lively experiment - I'm very attached to Zippy and wouldn't normally leave her there - but for the fact that she 'followed her instincts' and is ensconced in a perfect place for an arboreal. (She's a 1 1/2" A. versicolor) I go up near her quite often - she never moves or skitters like she did when she was in the Carnegie Pickle jar when I removed the cover to mist and feed her. She seems to be getting quite used to me around her... I can just see her so much better, too. The booklungs and etc....

I can not read her mind or instincts (although I'd like to think I do!:D but from an observer's / researcher's point of view; this is one happy arboreal. My biggest concern is the possibility of roaming. I haven't sexed it yet - hoping for a female....

Pictures to follow - you've got to see my bedroom suite to really appreciate the 'rain forest' type set up. I want a whole room full of free range, but know it's not feasible.

But only you folks can understand the delight - wonder - and peaceful feeling I get when I look up and she's just right there; waiting for her next cricket. :drool:

Thanks for all the input! Take care, Kim Ski
 

Meaningless End

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this to me actually sounds realy cool.. i get what andrew is saying and i would definalty take it into acount but i cant help but to want to get a few A. avics and try out something simular.. im not going to but i would be lying if i said that i didnt think it would be cool... i have a versi and theyre is no way i would let her out like that though. i raised her from 1/2in to about 3in and i would just be to worried about her.
 

Spiderface

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Wasn't there someone a while back that had an avic in a banana plant of some kind? Anyway I like the idea of having a tarantula living in a large potted plant in my living room but I would be nervous that something would happen to it.
 

kimski

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Some pictures (Finally!)

Welp, Zippy just molted again, possibly last night. Here are some photos of her (haven't sexed yet - molt is still up there) setup.

Now you can get a better idea of what I mean.
Thanks for all the replies.
Kim Ski
 
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