How did you get into keeping Tarantulas?

Braden

Arachnosquire
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Nov 3, 2019
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87
How did you find yourself to finally own a T? How many do you have and how is your experience with them. I just thought I would make a thread about casual stuff. I personally love reading other peoples stories and experience and I'm guessing others also enjoy it. Guess ill start it off :)

I got into T's a little over a year ago, around may 2019. I was always interested in inverts and I wanted a pet that was cheaper to take care of and really cool.My first T was a T albopilosus about 2'', I named her peaches. She was a sweetheart but got some hair kicking attitude at about 3''. 8 months later I found myself with another T albo, a 4'' female and she was awesome. Fast forward a few months and I got another T albo, this time a 1/4'' sling and a 2'' LP. Fast forward another 6 months and I got a 3'' OBT and a 1/2'' sling. Currently my Peaches is over 5'', and I absolutely love her. The T albo sling is now over an inch and the LP is over 4''. I love my T's so much and I'm so glad I got into them.
 

Ian14

Arachnosquire
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Nov 27, 2019
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130
I always wanted a giant centipede but wanted to get a cb pedeling rather than a wc adult. When I found one, the delivery cost was double the price of the pedeling. So I ordered a P sazimai sling to balance it out. Lots of research and reading and 12 months later I now have 28 tarantulas and 2 giant pedes.

To put some more context, I have been keeping and breeding snakes since I was 12 (32 years now!). I went to a local herp show when I was 11 and someone there had red knee tarantula slings for £1 each. No matter how hard i tried, my mum was not budging. £1 or not, she was not having a tarantula in the house!! So after much winging, sulking and pestering she gave in and as a compromise I was allowed a snake for my 12th birthday but only if I learned how to keep one first. So I spent months at the library, and hours and hours in a local pet shop that sold reptiles. I was rewarded for my efforts with a baby garter snake.
I always kept a fascination with tarantulas but wasn't allowed them at home. Unfortunately, when I moved in with my other half, she also made it clear that there would be no tarantulas! 20 years down the line I finally got my way. Now she's seen how secure they are she's happy (ish!) for me to have them.
 
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Matt Man

Arachnolord
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Jul 4, 2017
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623
My then 5 year old daughter said "Daddy I want a Spider" and when a little girl asks you for something most little girls would find creepy-crawly you jump on it. That was 12 years and 20 plus Ts ago.
 

LD50

Arachnosquire
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Nov 13, 2002
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98
I've always been interested in arachnids so I started researching them. I stumbled upon petbugs caresheets and then onto the forums. I saw a picture of a G. rosea and the rest is pretty much history. Here I am 18 years later enjoying this hobby.
 

Tarantuland

Arachnoknight
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Mar 19, 2020
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I always liked spiders and I went to an expo to buy a tortoise. Realized how expensive it would be for a decent set up and grabbed curly and LP slings and a asian forest scorpion for dirt cheap. Fell in love. Tarantulas > Scorpions but scorpions are cool too.
 

scooter1685

Arachnopeon
Joined
May 28, 2006
Messages
43
Oh boy. When you see how long my response is, just remember you asked :lol: I'll try not to ramble too much.

My mother is an extreme arachnophobe. When I was 17, I was helping her bring groceries from her car into her house and saw a tiny house spider on the front door. When she saw it, she dropped the groceries she had been carrying and ran to her car. She locked herself in there until I moved the spider onto the neighbor's bushes. I've always been curious about why she is so terrified of spiders.

Back in late 2005 or early 2006 I ordered my first 2 tarantulas. Felt like a brave and adventurous thing to do. I had already been keeping exotic reptiles for 12-13 years, so I was accustomed to offering food only once every week or two. Tarantulas came in colors my snakes didn't, like purple and blue. Ordered a Caribena versicolor (Avicularia at the time) and Acanthoscurria geniculata. I lost the versicolor to stupid husbandry errors, and pinhead crickets, during a molt about a year later. Ended up selling the geniculata after about 18 months or so, because we were moving into a place that wouldn't allow the spiders.

I ended up selling all of my reptile breeders and babies a few years ago, when we moved to a new state for my wife's job. After a couple years, I really missed my snakes and wanted more exotics. Can't really explain; it just feels like something isn't quite right. I've had exotic pets almost my whole life. She said that she would rather have tarantulas than relatively large reptiles for now, so we did some research here on AB and purchased a few slings. Here we are, a little more than a year later, and now I have 30.

They are absolutely stunning, and at this point I enjoy them about as much as I did my reptiles. I still miss my reptiles though. Can't exactly interact with them in the same way. They are fascinating though, and I'm happy to wait a couple more years if it means I get to have such colorful and fascinating pets.
 

Braden

Arachnosquire
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Nov 3, 2019
Messages
87
Oh boy. When you see how long my response is, just remember you asked :lol: I'll try not to ramble too much.

My mother is an extreme arachnophobe. When I was 17, I was helping her bring groceries from her car into her house and saw a tiny house spider on the front door. When she saw it, she dropped the groceries she had been carrying and ran to her car. She locked herself in there until I moved the spider onto the neighbor's bushes. I've always been curious about why she is so terrified of spiders.

Back in late 2005 or early 2006 I ordered my first 2 tarantulas. Felt like a brave and adventurous thing to do. I had already been keeping exotic reptiles for 12-13 years, so I was accustomed to offering food only once every week or two. Tarantulas came in colors my snakes didn't, like purple and blue. Ordered a Caribena versicolor (Avicularia at the time) and Acanthoscurria geniculata. I lost the versicolor to stupid husbandry errors, and pinhead crickets, during a molt about a year later. Ended up selling the geniculata after about 18 months or so, because we were moving into a place that wouldn't allow the spiders.

I ended up selling all of my reptile breeders and babies a few years ago, when we moved to a new state for my wife's job. After a couple years, I really missed my snakes and wanted more exotics. Can't really explain; it just feels like something isn't quite right. I've had exotic pets almost my whole life. She said that she would rather have tarantulas than relatively large reptiles for now, so we did some research here on AB and purchased a few slings. Here we are, a little more than a year later, and now I have 30.

They are absolutely stunning, and at this point I enjoy them about as much as I did my reptiles. I still miss my reptiles though. Can't exactly interact with them in the same way. They are fascinating though, and I'm happy to wait a couple more years if it means I get to have such colorful and fascinating pets.
Wonderful, absolutely wonderful! I'm glad you got back into exotic pets!
 

Jess S

Arachnobaron
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Mar 10, 2019
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376
I used to be extremely arachnophobic. I wanted to get over that phobia for the sake of my daughter. I used to run screaming from any spider I spotted. Proper visceral terror. If the spider disappeared by the time I got a braver person to remove it, I'd insist they found it, while I would cower in the hallway and squeal when they came out "Don't bring it near me!!! Aaaargh!!!!".
If it was a big spider and we couldn't find it, then the room would be sealed up like an Egyptian tomb lol As in cellotape around the doorway. And I wouldn't go in there for days.

I made myself overcome that fear by watching spiders on YouTube and of course started seeing tarantula videos. One day I googled what is the biggest tarantula on the world. Came across RobC's Zilla video's and over the next couple of years lived, slept and breathed tarantulas on the internet as my fear had turned to fascination. I actually become quite knowledgeable just by doing all that reading and watching.

Getting my first t was a very proud moment for me. Only a sling but I wasn't sure how I'd react when it arrived. I was fine and the rehousing went great.

I found facing and overcoming that fear with the help of my tarantulas to be a watershed moment in my life. It made me feel powerful, and that I am strong and can overcome things. I'd recommend facing any phobia by either getting help or doing it yourself. I'm proof it can be done.
 
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EnigmaNyx

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Oct 21, 2020
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116
Honestly I didn't know that there were so many different genera/species of T's. I started researching and at first it was a joke with my wife. Then we caught a little Jumper in the backyard, raised her babies twice, and my wife is in love with her. So we began to see the "cuteness" of T's. Less than 2 months into the hobby we have 9, and I have to hold myself back from splurging on more...

Plus, I always tell folks that wonder why we keep them some great benefits to T's as pets:

No Vets
No Medicine
Food is cheap
Care is almost null if you want it to be
They do interesting stuff/Fun to watch
Feeding is awesome
Get your fix of adrenaline on rehousing
Live for a long dang time
Great way to teach kids about respect for animals (Look with your eyes, not your hands)
Plus, as kids in school, who didn't love their diorama projects??? Building enclosures is literally that.


We're learnin every day, and it's really neat because it doesn't take a lot of our time up, but still is enjoyable when we just sit and watch.


Oooo almost forgot... another great benefit = tarantula kisses. Right on the fangs. They love it.
They also love tong feeding (that's what @viper69 told me anyways...)
 

AshAmorexo

Arachnopeon
Joined
Oct 24, 2020
Messages
0
When I was younger my dad wouldn’t let me get a pet, years of asking was always a no. He’s terrified of spiders so I bought a T and it lived under my bed for 3 years until I moved out, he never knew until I left 🤷‍♀️ .... pic of my Rosie 3E1C9709-7B68-422E-81AF-F62BB63DDB0E.jpeg
 

jay444

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Apr 25, 2020
Messages
85
I've been keeping reptiles all my life and owning a tarantula was on my bucked list. For my ex-girlfriend, having a T under our roof was a definitive no since she was a true arachnophobe (with panic attacks and everything). When we broke up about a year ago, I got myself my first tarantula, a sub-adult A. avicularia (the initial plan was to keep only one tarantula, but you guys all know what happens from here lol). I'm now up to 20, got my first OWs not so long ago and more passionate about the hobby than ever and still learning everyday.

My actual girlfriend love them since she knows they keep the ex far away from our place :rofl:
 

mantisfan101

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Dec 26, 2018
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1,515
I saw a documentary on Animal Planet when I was around 6-7 with a massive theraphosa...after that I wanted one so bad, I remember begging my parents at a petco to buy me the rosea/porteri that was available. I gave up on them for a while, had a bit of trouble with an Aphonopelma seemanni, then got my current trio- a vagans, hapalopus sp colombia large, and an aphonopelma hentzi
 

spideyspinneret78

Arachnobaron
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Jul 19, 2019
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I always thought that spiders were fascinating creatures, even though I was afraid of some of them. But oddly enough I always thought that tarantulas were cute, mostly because they were fluffy and seemed less creepy to me. When I was in vet tech school, I met someone in my class who brought her tarantulas one day to show everyone. I was enthralled by them...their size, appearance, and the vivid coloration of the adult female GBB that I had a chance to look at. I'd been thinking vaguely about getting one for a while and that same day right after class I decided to go for it. I went to the local exotics shop and picked up a L. klugi sling, admittedly not knowing a whole lot about what I was getting. I immediately fell in love. The little fluffy sling was fascinating, beautiful, and there was so much to learn about these incredible creatures. 2 years later and I have 19 Ts, and am just as fascinated with them as the day I brought my first spider home.
 

LucN

Arachnopeon
Joined
Jan 22, 2009
Messages
41
My adventure with spiders has been predicted long ago. I recall reading about bugs when I was 6 or 7, there was a book at my school's library and it was the first time I saw a depiction of a scorpion. I can't remember if it was an actual picture or a drawing, but it had something along the lines of "A scorpion is a distant relative of the spider, native to all warm countries of the world.". That sparked a fascination that would mark my journey to owning a T in several instances.

At some point in probably 1991, I discover Arachnophobia through the local rental store. Barely a teen, I couldn't take my eyes off the various spiders in the film, especially the big one that was climbing up a terrified Jeff Daniels' leg. I recall renting it many, many times.

Moving on to the summer of 1993, our town opens up its Botanical Garden, and to kick things off, they have a special insect display room coming from... the world-famous Montreal Insectarium. Most were pinned specimens. It's there I see my very first live Tarantula before me... a massive Theraphosa. It was kept in an acrylic enclosure, very little sub and a huge half-log as a hide. I literally spent my ENTIRE summer just gawking at it. I was quite fascinated.

Several years later, I wander into my local pet shop and peruse the pet book section. I walk out with Philippe de Vosjoli's Arachnomania book. I read cover to cover, many, many times. The picture with the G. porteri below the H. minax is what hypnotyses me. I begin to have dreams of owning my very own T.

Eventually, in early 2009, everything comes together. I walk over to my local pet store and see that they have a G. porteri on hand. A week later, I begin my T keeping career by making all the newbie mistakes, such as using aquarium gravel as sub, trying to feed my T a handful of crickets on the very first day, etc... Eventually, I sold this porteri on the grounds of not feeling ready to have her die on me since being WC there was no way to tell her exact age.

At the time, I didn't post much on Arachnoboards and perused the ATS boards. There, I learned to switch to coco fiber as sub, feed my T less and chill out. Almost 12 years later, now with a gorgeous B. boehmei, my B. hamorii from TarCan (It was my Dream T back in 2011), another WC but younger and fairly chill G. porteri and last but certainly not least, a gentle T. albopilosus I took home once I found out somebody dropped her at LPS when they became bored of her.

Geez, quite the story. I can't see myself without one or two Ts now. Heh.
 

DomGom TheFather

Arachnoangel
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Apr 26, 2020
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816
I was a bug kid who begged until I got at G. rosea for my ninth birthday. She was a wild caught adult female from the local pet store that I creatively named Rosie. She died the year I moved out at eighteen and I still miss her.
To this day I haven't gotten another rose hair. I just can't for some reason.

I had a few in my days renting and when I got my own home and had children I grew a little more as a keeper.
I now keep a small collection of 17 T's, 1 scorpion, seven large roach bins with four species and a colony of dermestid beetles. I also dabble with ants.
Bottom line, get your kid that spider! It's not a phase.
 

thatdadlife619

Arachnosquire
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Dec 24, 2019
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90
Got into watching YouTube t keepers a couple years ago, which got me interested and besides for a select few that’s about all they were good for...sparking my interest .
 

HdLazarus

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Nov 17, 2020
Messages
4
Used to watch a lot of Animal Planet and Discovery Channel when I was younger so i always found spiders and other insects interesting, that being said the thought of owning one as a pet never even crossed my for one second. Then I stumbled across Jon3800 and RobC's Youtube channels back in 2011 and was blow away by how diverse they can be when it comes to size and color. After doing a lot research and seeing just how simple they can be to keep I had to get at least one which of course led to me getting more cause you can't have just one haha.
 

Craig73

Arachnobaron
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Jun 2, 2016
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357
Arachnophobia. I’m 2016 I attempted and quickly found out I was not ready. In 2020Q1 I decided to re-attempt with three avics. The M6 and the Kwitara were easy to house, but nerve racking. The A Minatrix is to blame for everything that came after. It didn’t move after I unrolled the tissue, but I knew it was alive. I nudged it with a paint brush and the turkey bolted on me and ignited an adrenaline rush I can’t really explain.

Honestly I care for all my T’s to the same caliber I do my other animals and talk to them when I do feedings and maintenance. Can’t tell you if the talking is my way of settling any nervous energy or not.
 

alexthedane

Arachnopeon
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Sep 22, 2020
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8
Well it started when I watched The Dark Den and realised how cool creatures tarantulas are and then I decided "I have to own one..", so I got myself first a B. Hamorii sling and then shortly after a juvenile B. Boehmei and then the recent one which was a G. Pulchra sling. I am so happy to own three tarantulas and probably going to order a pink toe tarantula when we get to spring, as I mistakenly got an exoterra enclosure which I read was mostly for arboreal species.

It's also quite impressive to see how much personality a tarantula actually can have. - My Boehmei is very curious and whenever I sit down on my chair next to her on my computer, then she can somehow feel it and walk towards me in the enclosure, and my G. Pulchra is curious, but yet a bit skittish - And, finally my B. Hamorii is the most calm tarantula I own despite how small it is and doesn't care when I change water and stuff :)
 
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