Hello from Great Basin with beginner question

Great Basin Ben

Arachnosquire
Joined
Oct 2, 2010
Messages
86
Hi everyone.
Many thanks for hosting such a great Forum. As you can tell, I'm BRAND NEW to the forum. I live in the high deserts of the Great Basin, and it is VERY DRY here. Needless to say, I joined a Tarantula forum, b/c I'm interested in keeping them. I've kept and bred many varieties of Tropical, AND Native North American fishes. Currently we (my son 18yrs old, and I) have a 4 1/2 ft. Ball Python, and 2 native 55 gallon fish aquariums, as well as 6 empty, and vacant 10 gallon glass aquariums.

So here's my $64,000 question. For someone in my shoes, what would be a GOOD (or GREAT) starter species for my son and I, keeping in mind how dry of a climate Nevada has. A friend recently came across some Mature Male Aphonopelma species down around Fresno, but after realizing that these were simply MM, out on the prowl after their "Ultimate Molt", I've decide against capturing any of THOSE. (At least the males).

I'd like to begin this adventure with a species that is docile. I don't plan on really doing much if any handling, but when cage cleaning time comes, I don't want a fang in me that's for sure. I'd also prefer a species that didn't kick hairs regularly, as I, and my son have had skin allergies in the past. Aside from that, I'm fairly open, but agin, in a pretty DRY climate. I thank you ALL ahead of time for your expertise.

ANY SUGGESTIONS???
 

Great Basin Ben

Arachnosquire
Joined
Oct 2, 2010
Messages
86
I'm kind of leaning toward a New River variety, but would greatly appreciate any comments, concerns, or questions...
 

Harlock

Arachnosquire
Old Timer
Joined
Mar 25, 2009
Messages
148
Well, if you're really worried about the hairs, you could try an Avic sp. Aviculara aviculara are pretty common and decently priced, but they arn't the best 'first T' simply due to their kind of spazz-y nature (they tend to bolt easily, but I've never, ever, been worried about one biting me)

If you don't mind the slow growth, some of our native Aphonopelma sp. are docile and quite pretty. I've seen more than a few sellers offering CB slings of them too.

As for a dry climate, you can cover part or all of the screen of a cage in cling-wrap, or use a plexi-glass lid if you want a higher moisture tarantula.
 

NikiP

Arachnobaron
Old Timer
Joined
Apr 16, 2006
Messages
540
Don't worry to much about your climate :) Most species just need a bottle cap with water to provide humidity.

How severe are ya'lls allergies? Most of the commonly suggested beginner species have hairs that can be kicked and can loose them in their enclosure even without kicking.

If you can stand the possibbility of coming into contact with lost hairs, i'd recommend these as nonkickers:

G. Pulchripes
B. Albopilosum
E. Campestratus
Avic. Avicularia or versicolor

If you don't want one capable of shedding period, i'd try E. Pachypus. It's not a commonly recommended beginner species and is an OW baboon, but i've read great things about their temper. Also believe someone has a reasonably priced female listed in the ads.
 

rbailey1010

Arachnopeon
Joined
Apr 11, 2010
Messages
27
+1 for G. pulchripes because of its sheer size and docility

that or E. campestratus because its just as docile and a great starter T
 

Chris_Skeleton

Arachnoprince
Old Timer
Joined
Jan 31, 2010
Messages
1,310
G. Pulchripes
B. Albopilosum
E. Campestratus
Avic. Avicularia or versicolor
+1 for G. pulchripes because of its sheer size and docility

that or E. campestratus because its just as docile and a great starter T
+1,000,000

G. pulchripes for my vote.

The others mentioned are also great starters.
I highly recommend G. pulchripes, with B. albo in second.
 

Great Basin Ben

Arachnosquire
Joined
Oct 2, 2010
Messages
86
MANY THANKS to everyone!!! I GREATLY appreciate all of this info. G. Pulchripes, seems to be THE reccomended beginner T, and I was definately considering it, for sure. BUT, to be honest, after just seeing the vid, and post about the E. Campestratus, I FELL IN LOVE. They ARE NOT CHEAP, as I'm sure you all know, so I've recently gone from thinking that I'd capture a wild Aphonopelma, to now saving my pennies for hopefully a Pink Zebra Beauty.

On the note of ordering ANY of the species mentioned, is there a sticky referring ANY of the dealers, or listing them. Again, I'm sure as I begin to poke around here, I'll find a lot more of these stickys, but appreciate any info, or positive experiences that you may or may not have had with any of the dealers.

Being a TOTAL noob, would it be in my best interest to get a sling, or something that has already molted a time or two? I can get small, medium, and large crickets ad nauseam, as well as giant meal worms, at my Local Pet Store. Finding food for a sling might prove to be more problematic though.
 

NikiP

Arachnobaron
Old Timer
Joined
Apr 16, 2006
Messages
540
MANY THANKS to everyone!!! I GREATLY appreciate all of this info. G. Pulchripes, seems to be THE reccomended beginner T, and I was definately considering it, for sure. BUT, to be honest, after just seeing the vid, and post about the E. Campestratus, I FELL IN LOVE. They ARE NOT CHEAP, as I'm sure you all know, so I've recently gone from thinking that I'd capture a wild Aphonopelma, to now saving my pennies for hopefully a Pink Zebra Beauty.

On the note of ordering ANY of the species mentioned, is there a sticky referring ANY of the dealers, or listing them. Again, I'm sure as I begin to poke around here, I'll find a lot more of these stickys, but appreciate any info, or positive experiences that you may or may not have had with any of the dealers.

Being a TOTAL noob, would it be in my best interest to get a sling, or something that has already molted a time or two? I can get small, medium, and large crickets ad nauseam, as well as giant meal worms, at my Local Pet Store. Finding food for a sling might prove to be more problematic though.
Almost all the good sellers have a reviews link in their signature. Just read through them.

Slings aren't to difficult to feed. If you can only get crickets bigger then the sling you end up with, just prekill the crick (i'd say squish the head.)

There's someone with 4 E. Camperstratus slings for $40, which isn't to bad. Maybe send them a PM to see if they'd do just a couple of slings?
 

Great Basin Ben

Arachnosquire
Joined
Oct 2, 2010
Messages
86
Almost all the good sellers have a reviews link in their signature. Just read through them.

Slings aren't to difficult to feed. If you can only get crickets bigger then the sling you end up with, just prekill the crick (i'd say squish the head.)

There's someone with 4 E. Camperstratus slings for $40, which isn't to bad. Maybe send them a PM to see if they'd do just a couple of slings?
This sounds FANTASTIC! Could you please maybe point me in the right direction, or even a link to the ad/classified that you're speaking of.

Also, for a sling/slings, would the SMALL live crickets that they sell at like, Petco, be what they would eat?
 

Stopdroproll

Arachnoknight
Old Timer
Joined
Aug 27, 2006
Messages
251
Yeah, they will eat the smallest ones you can get. Keep in mind of the growth speed when getting a sling. I'm not sure of the growth rate of the E. campestratus, though. Maybe get 1 sling and 1 juvenile or adult.
 

hassman789

Arachnobaron
Old Timer
Joined
Dec 2, 2009
Messages
577
Don't worry to much about your climate :) Most species just need a bottle cap with water to provide humidity.

How severe are ya'lls allergies? Most of the commonly suggested beginner species have hairs that can be kicked and can loose them in their enclosure even without kicking.

If you can stand the possibbility of coming into contact with lost hairs, i'd recommend these as nonkickers:

G. Pulchripes
B. Albopilosum
E. Campestratus
Avic. Avicularia or versicolor

If you don't want one capable of shedding period, i'd try E. Pachypus. It's not a commonly recommended beginner species and is an OW baboon, but i've read great things about their temper. Also believe someone has a reasonably priced female listed in the ads.
I have heard B. albopilosum can be quite the hair kickers. Mine does wimpy kicks like it dosn't even try but I wouldn't want one of those if I was really sensitive to hairs.
 

Chris_Skeleton

Arachnoprince
Old Timer
Joined
Jan 31, 2010
Messages
1,310
E. campestratus really aren't expensive from what I've seen. You can get an adult at a great price. I'm pretty sure an adult PZB is cheaper than an adult Chaco.
 

Great Basin Ben

Arachnosquire
Joined
Oct 2, 2010
Messages
86
I'm actively checking the classified here, and have only got through the first couple pages, as the "collections", and "HUGE SALE" posts, might contain one of them, but I have yet to see anything, with the exception, of the "eggs with legs" thread, and if you are reading this, I will be e-mailing you soon, and I apologize for not knowing anyone, or their names yet. I am a total noob here, but very thankful, and excited to hopefully find one of the beautiful Pink Zebra Beauties. So far, I GREATLY appreciate all of the info on the slings vs. juveniles. Also thanks for the heads up on the crickets, and finding VERY SMALL ones locally probably would pose no problems at all. This is exciting stuff! :drool:
 

Great Basin Ben

Arachnosquire
Joined
Oct 2, 2010
Messages
86
Nah get an Aphonopelma sir, great spiders.
I don't doubt it one bit! In fact, Aphonopelma, is the VERY REASON that I even considered keeping a Tarantula in the first place. I live in the high desert of the Great Basin, and we DO have them around. I just have a bit of a moral delimina capturing what I'm fairly sure would be a MM, knowing that he would likely die within a year, and NOT have spread his genetics, because I put him in a terrarium for the last few months of his life. If I could get a guarenteed FEMALE from out in my neck of the woods, I've read that they can live as long as 30 years, and ARE quite docile, which sounds PERFECT for me!

Also, the fact that they are NATIVE to my are really does appeal to me too. All of the fish that we currently keep , are ALL natives of the Great Basin, and it would be quite cool to keep native Inverts as well... Also, I've read that the Aphonopelma are not notorious hair kickers which is appealing to me too.

The problem, is that aside from New River specimens, there ARE NO Aphonopelma iodius (or nevadanum), to choose from the dealers out there. I think it will require me, educating myself, about Great Basin varieties, and then actively go searching for a Female myself. I've got no problem doing that though, and think it will likely be the most rewarding way to not only learn about, but to introduce an Aphonopelma into my home. I'm sure that I won't just have (1) T, if it goes ANYTHING like it did with fish, or snakes.{D

How are the Hentzi"s compaired to the Great Basin varieties? I'm guessing still Terrestrial species, but probably need slightly more humidity??? Are they as docile and long lived though?
 
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