Jul 27, 2002
hello everyone i need some answers quickly please my mexican flame knee who i ve spoke of before is slowly starving himslef to death i fear...he hasn't eaten in a couple of weeks ... he has a huge bald spot on he butt from flicking hairs....something he rarely did before i moved... could he be suffering from stress???....what can i do also he loved climbing the glass walls of his tank but he kept falling from the top so i changeed to a critter cage with a lower cage height.. im really scared i don't want him to die so please help me


He Who Rules
Staff member
Jul 16, 2002
Hey Scarko,

Sounds like premolt behavior to me. Probably nothing to worry about. Does it look like the bald spot is darkening? That means the molt is most likely going to happen really soon. At that point you must make sure there are no prey items in the enclosure with the tarantula? Have you ever seen your tarantula molt before? If not, don't worry if you wake up one day and see your tarantula on it's back. Normally they will molt on their backs. If you see this, do not touch it or disturb it as this is one of the most fragile times in a tarantulas life. Once it's done you may think you see two tarantulas in the tank. This will not be so, one will be the T and the other will be the shed skin. Once the T is done molting, depending on the size, you may have to wait anywhere from 1 day to over a week for it to be ready to eat again. You should not touch it or introduce prey into the tank at this time either. Easiest way to get a general idea is to look at the fangs and see if they're black. Once they're black, your T should be ready to eat.

One thing to remember is that T's have slow metabolisms. They are quite prone to going on long fasts sometimes. As long as their abdomen does not shrink and you always have a source of clean fresh water (no sponges) your T should be fine.

Hope that helps some,


Code Monkey

Old Timer
Jul 22, 2002
Yep, what Scott said ;)

No store should be allowed to sell a T to anyone without at least mentioning the golden rule of thumb: if the abdomen is not noticeably shrinking, there is no reason to be concerned just because a T isn't eating. I once had a WC specimen that simply refused to eat for almost five months out of the year during the winter for its entire lifespan with me (well over a decade).

Bald spots happen, rare is the Brachypelma that doesn't reach its next moult without some sort of bald spot. They're just a nervous and hair-kicking group of Ts. Given that it sounds like a moult is imminent, I wouldn't be overly concerned about stress. Now, if it moults, and two months later (I'm assuming we're discussing an adult here) it's bald again, then maybe you should look into disturbances in its environment.


Old Timer
Jul 19, 2002
My B. Albopilosum is going through exactly the same thing as your spider at the moment, dont worry, and let us know how it gets on.