How to set up a burrower cage?

Bjorgly

Arachnodemon
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Aug 7, 2002
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HI all, im getting an a.seemani soon (4-5 inches or so) and i understand they are burrowers. I didnt think i wanted a burrower until i found out that these guys burrowed. They are a good starter burrower i think because they are hardy and docile, just a tad skittish. So for a T of this size how would i set up a good burrowing cage? substrate depth? cage decor? type of substrate? any help appreciated! this will be my first obligate burrower thanks!

Mark
 

Wade

Arachnoking
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Aug 16, 2002
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Although they are indeed burrowers, they may or may not choose to in captivity. Some of mine are dedicated earth movers, while others don't seem to care.

I use a mix of peat and vermiculite as a substrate. It needs to be deep enough so that the distance from the surface to the top of the cage isn't much more that the outstreached legspread of the tarantula, in case of a fall (this is a rule for all terrestrial species).

I bury a split section of 5" black, plastic drainage pipe at an angle, sticking out. This allows the tarantula to hollow out the burrow underneath.

Some keepers feel that this species needs a high moisture content in the substrate. If you notice that your T spends all it's time on or next to it's water bowl, you may want to moisten the substrate a bit.

"A little skittish" is a good description of thier temperment. Mine don't seem prone to biting, but they may run right off your hand if you handle them. If you choose to do this, I'd do it laying on a carpeted floor, as a fall could be fatal.

Good luck!

Wade
 

Lycanthrope

Arachnolord
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Oct 10, 2002
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congrats! A.seemani was my 2nd T., and still one of my personal favorites. I set her up in an opportunistic burrower sort of habitat. I took a rounded roofing tyle, scored it and broke it in half. i filled her cage with about 5 inches of substrate, sticking the tile in at a slant, then burried all but the face. this left a slight mound with an arch shaped hole in the front, which led into the "pre burrow". she loves it, allthough i sometimes dont see her for a while;) . and as far as skittish, mine fits that discription, she runs and kicks hairs until shes on my hand, then sits perfectly still without moving. it seems such an unpleasant experience for her that ive restricted handling to when im cleaning her cage, and then only long enough to place her in a temporary enclosure.
 

Bjorgly

Arachnodemon
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SO do you think it would be okay for me to allower her to make a completly natural burrow? with no pipes or anything? I was thinking 5-7 inches of peat/potting soil mix maybe a little vermiculite and just a flat rock or something for her to dig under.

Mark
 

Lycanthrope

Arachnolord
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Oct 10, 2002
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624
im sure shed be as happy as ever there, but remember she may not feel the need to burrow at all. take it as a compliment if she doesnt, it means she feels safe enough within the cage, and you get to see her more
 

Bjorgly

Arachnodemon
Old Timer
Joined
Aug 7, 2002
Messages
729
Ok cool, maybe ill just put a pot in there as well for her to hide in a nice big 10 gallon cage with tones of substrate so she can do as she pleases!


Mark
 
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