How you've handled escapes?

Flutterbat

Arachnopeon
Joined
Jul 27, 2016
Messages
23
I would absolutely LOVE to hear stories about how you have handled your escaped Ts! I personally have never had to deal with it before (thank god). The closest thing to it would be when I was a lot younger (Around 8 to 10) I encountered a B. Smithi underneath my porch! It was obviously someone's escaped pet. It sort of scarred me because it had gotten up into its defensive position and hissed. While I have gotten over my fear of spiders and now own one, I am still slightly uncomfortable around any B. Smithi.
 

tarantulashack

Arachnopeon
Joined
Jan 20, 2015
Messages
17
Although I've never actually had a real escape(knock on wood) I have had multiple open the tops and bolt and dash between other cages especially with a c. Marshalli..happened 3 days ago was chasing him around the spider room about 20 minutes. The most important thing I've learned is the calmer you stay the better the situation goes. :)
 

cold blood

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jan 19, 2014
Messages
11,861
I handle escapes with forethought...I used the ladder system, slowly working my way up, so that by the time I got to faster species, I knew how to deal with them without escapes.

Most escapes are the direct result of "operator error". I had a chromatus sling escape...simply because I didn't put the top all the way back on. I never looked for it...a week later I moved the dog bed and found the t.
 

Haksilence

Bad At Titles
Joined
Dec 6, 2015
Messages
405
Best way to handle an escape is to avoid then entirely. Don't get complacent.
That being said, if an escape does happen it helps to know the species well. Is it arboreal or terrestrial? Is it arid or tropical? Answering these questions can help you place the probability of a hiding spot.
Arboreal escapees can often be found behind dressers, in hanging cloths in closets, in drapes and curtains ect. Terrestrials will almost always be found in a corner, under a bed or piece of furniture, inside a shoe ect. You can expect tropicals to migrate to a warm or humid place in the house, I've heard quite a few events of them being found on the back/inside the warm inner workings of a refrigerator.
 

Coconana

Arachnosquire
Joined
May 21, 2015
Messages
105
Growing up, we had a lot of escapees. Lost a 1.0 4" P. Irminia in our house and apparently never found the little guy. Back when OBT's were new, we lost a sling named 'Killer Cheeto', then found him a few months later on the refrigerator after having molted successfully --twice. I've watched my mother gently coax countless Poecilotheria off of the outside of other cages in our tarantula room, and more than once, I recall watching her poke tongs behind the toilet in order to coax out OW's that didn't want to go into their shipping containers.

Didn't really have anything to do with complacency or lack of care; a lot of the species we kept were fast enough to scale a pair of 12" tongs in the blink of an eye, and while I'm sure that a few were definitely due to human error, we happened to get the short end of the stick when it came to escapees. Thankfully, most were lost in the tarantula room, so they tended to either head for the heater for warmth or into the closet so that they could get away from the light. Most T's tend to like their privacy, so 'dark and warm' are good places to keep an eye out for them in, or near.

When it comes to my current collection, I've only ever had two escapees --both of which were found, and both of which were error on my part concerning either ventilation hole sizing issues, or otherwise unsuitable enclosures. The first was a 1" P. Metallica sling, and I beat myself up looking like crazy for the three days that it was lost in the tarantula room, though it eventually popped up near the vents on the wall. The second was a 1.5" H. Sp. "Colombia Large" juvie (he's my buddy's --not mine--and she came by with a questionable new container for him that I stupidly turned my cheek to and went, 'well, I guess he'll be okay in that'), but I thankfully found him the next afternoon beneath a paper bag on the other side of the room.

Keeping calm is imperative; not just when it comes to escapees, but really while doing anything that requires you to interact with your tarantulas --whether it's cage maintenance, rehousing, packing for shipping, breeding or feeding. Be aware of the location of your T at all times, and try to give yourself plenty of time to patiently and smartly complete any necessary tasks. Those two things are oftentimes enough to prevent escapees in the first place, though sometimes accidents do still happen despite our attentiveness, but while it is unfortunate and oftentimes frustrating (not to mention embarrassing when it comes to admitting these things on a forum), it's what we do with these situations in the future that better determines what kind of keepers we are.

'Dark and warm' are good places to peek, but as another member said, please do keep in mind the type of tarantula you're dealing with. Bathrooms also tend to draw T's thanks to humidity and water, but I'd also keep an eye on room corners, or places where carpet or wood flooring meets the wall. Keeping catch cups sprinkled intermittently throughout the house when you know that you're dealing with an escapee is also not a bad idea. Searching the walls or floor at night or dusk/dawn with a flashlight is occasionally helpful.

Sorry this was such a long post! I hope that you can spot something helpful buried in here though, should the misfortune of an escaped tarantula ever grace your house :embarrassed:
 

viper69

ArachnoGod
Old Timer
Joined
Dec 8, 2006
Messages
11,508
I've never had an escape. If one is careful/methodical, thorough and does proper research ahead of buying (helpful IME) it will be a non-issue.

I do all my rehousing/husbandry the same way each time for each species thus minimizing my chances of an escape.
 

CyclingSam

Arachnoknight
Joined
May 22, 2016
Messages
220
When I was a teenager, my A. moderatum escaped twice. I always found it with in a few hours. It was always in my younger sisters room. She wanted a new room.
 

louise f

Arachnoangel
Joined
Jul 8, 2012
Messages
936
Never had an escape. Only a juvenile P. striata that ran like hell when i unpacked it. :D Had to tear my table apart, because the bugger stayed in there.:D
Besides from that no escapes.
 

KezyGLA

Arachnoking
Joined
Apr 8, 2016
Messages
3,033
Ive only had 2 escapes (hoping it stays that way). The first one was a large juvie G. porteri a good few years ago.

I must have left the lid unsecure after feeding night. :banghead:

I woke up to my dog running around the bedroom talking (he was very vocal). I turned round to see him sitting next to her, just watching her walk about the floor. I managed to capture her and place her back in her home.

I am very lucky that she was not injured and my dog was not bitten. :eek:

The second was a Large juvie B. emilia that broke out of a flimsy enclosure earlier this year.

I was vigerously searching for her. I looked all around the T room, every nook and crannie. There was no sign of her. Then I walked into the hall and I went straight to the shoe rack and sure enough, there she was. She was tucked in all cosy in one of my sneakers and she was not for coming out. I removed all the laces to get in with a paintbrush all gentle. I didn't want to hurt her or stress her out any more. She made it very difficult so I let her stay in there while setting up her new enclosure.

I sat the shoe on the lid of the old one and placed the new one next to it. I waited a good 10 mins then I saw the little legs poking out the top of the shoe. She climbed out and went straight into her new enclosures hide.

I was extremely happy that I didn't lose her forever :)
 
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KezyGLA

Arachnoking
Joined
Apr 8, 2016
Messages
3,033
When I was a teenager, my A. moderatum escaped twice. I always found it with in a few hours. It was always in my younger sisters room. She wanted a new room.
Please tell it that it can crash at mine the next time it goes a wonder ;)
 

SausageinaNet

Arachnopeon
Joined
Nov 26, 2015
Messages
33
I thought one of my Ts escaped but in the end it just was hidden inside the enclosure. I searched everywhere and after not finding it I just waited for it to turn up somewhere.
 

Shampain88

Arachnosquire
Joined
Jan 26, 2016
Messages
64
I've never had one escape in the sense that I don't know it's out but I had an H.Lividum on my back a few weeks ago lol! It pays to be calm and patient in my limited experience... :)
 

CyclingSam

Arachnoknight
Joined
May 22, 2016
Messages
220
Aw that sucks. It's a shame too. I thought Aphonopelma lived forever :(
Well, it would probably still be alive if it was not in the care an custody of an idiot 14-15 year old boy. Sad life lessons: SAND BOX SAND IS NOT A PROPER SUBSTRATE!
 

KezyGLA

Arachnoking
Joined
Apr 8, 2016
Messages
3,033
I've never had one escape in the sense that I don't know it's out but I had an H.Lividum on my back a few weeks ago lol! It pays to be calm and patient in my limited experience... :)
It just wanted to get a snuggle.
Did it slip ye a kiss? :rofl:
 

evilebe

Arachnosquire
Joined
Mar 9, 2012
Messages
98
The ventilation holes in my prepunched deli cups were to large for 10 or 11 slings a while back. I now have a few fossorials that I'm not sure what species they are.
 

bryverine

Arachnoangel
Joined
Apr 18, 2012
Messages
894
It sort of scarred me because it had gotten up into its defensive position and hissed.
I think you may have remembered it worse than it was though I'm sure it was traumatic. I'm pretty sure, correct me if I'm wrong, Brachypelma can't stridulate.

I've only had fun with one transfer and luckily no escapes so far.

The only one to give me trouble rehousing was my Cyriopagopus lividum named Grump (until I can get a molt). It didn't want any part of the tunnel I made and left the new enclosure several times. It was hanging on to the bath tub side at one point so well that I could not budge it with the catch cup or brush. Very feisty, stubborn little one. :embarrassed:
 

Tenevanica

Arachnodemon
Joined
Feb 18, 2015
Messages
727
I think you may have remembered it worse than it was though I'm sure it was traumatic. I'm pretty sure, correct me if I'm wrong, Brachypelma can't stridulate.
I thought that was a little odd as well. Our minds can bend and twist things in crazy ways though, especially if the experience was traumatic.
 
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