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Humidity for a tailless whip scorpion (Damon Diadema)?

Discussion in 'Other Spiders & Arachnids' started by WeightedAbyss75, Mar 2, 2016.

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    I am really looking for a "first arboreal" and whip scorpions seem to be a great option. I already have a 12x12x16 (lxwxh) which I know is big enough for 1 and possibly 2 or 3. The only problem is humidity. As I've never had anything with high humidity, this will be new. Is there an approximate way to get good humidity for these guys (preferably without a gauge, as people told me they can be unreliable).

    Thanks, Abyss
  2. BobBarley

    BobBarley Arachnoprince

    D. diadema are pretty drought tolerant, but you should provide some humidity. Keep the substrate moist and/or add some sphagnum moss and keep it a little moist, not wet. If you notice the specimen hanging out closer to the ground a lot more, it could be a sign that you need to lower ventilation a bit and/or up the humidity. These guys are pretty easy, good luck!:)
    • Agree Agree x 1
  3. sschind

    sschind Arachnobaron Old Timer

    These are one of the easiest species I have ever kept. I used to keep my male and female on top of my Aquarium hood and their containers (cheese ball containers) constantly had condensation. I kept them that way for years and bred them several times.

    for the last 6 months or so I've had them in my bug room and so the bottom heat is less and the condensation has gone down but they still seem fine. I'm waiting for the female to molt again to reintroduce them. I've never used a gauge for humidity. I just keep the substrate damp and mist once a week or so.

    I keep the babies on paper towel in 32oz delis so I mist them every 3 or 4 days as the paper towel seem to dry out faster. As BB said, if you notice them hanging out near he bottom they may need a spritzing.

    Keep them on damp coco fiber and perhaps cut down on ventilation a bit and you should be fine.
    • Agree Agree x 2
  4. Aquarimax

    Aquarimax Arachnoangel

    To keep my D. diadema enclosure humid in my 12 x 12 x 18 Exo Terra vivarium, I use coco fiber as a substrate as sschind suggested above. I mist as needed, and I also have covered the screen top with a panel of glass and a panel of plastic. The panels are not sealed, so there is still some top ventilation, but not a lot. It seems to work very well, although mine are all still fairly young whiplings about a year old. I've only had them for about 10 months, and they've only been in that enclosure since November. So far, so good!
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2016
  5. I have that exact same cage and it sounds like a great plan if I decide to get them. 2 questions though, if I wanted a communal setup would I get them little and put them in the 12 x 12 x 18 for life AND would 2-3 adults fit in a 12 x 12 x 18 cage?
    • Like Like x 1
  6. Aquarimax

    Aquarimax Arachnoangel

    I kept mine in a 2.5 gallon tank for the first few months...I think it worked better that way, in part because they were more likely to encounter prey items in the smaller setup, and less likely to disappear into a crevice somewhere. Now that they're bigger, the 12 x 12 x 18 works well, but the smallest of the three sometimes still squeezes into the small gap between the cork panel background and the glass, where I can't really see it. The other two are too big to do that anymore.

    Personally, I am not planning on maintaining a communal setup indefinitely. It seems too risky. I will probably have to separate them within a few months.

    From what I gather, the size of the container is ample. According to wizetrop in this thread
    they don't need a lot of space. However, they may still become aggressive with each other. I've never kept adults...I've just heard about a number of pairs that do fine together until one molts and the other gets hungry. Then again, some seem to do well in communal setups. I just choose to err on the side of caution. : )
    • Agree Agree x 1
  7. I read the thread(great btw) and was wondering if you only have a background and a vertical raised styrofoam of multiple others at diff. angles? Seems that they couldn't hide very well that way if there's only 1 slab of styrofoam. A pic would help me if at all possible of your setup.
  8. jaredc

    jaredc Arachnosquire

    I use a gauge keep my humidity around 70-80%. That number was given to me by an experienced ambly breeder.
  9. wizentrop

    wizentrop to the rescue! Old Timer

    @WeightedAbyss75 raises a very good point and I thought it might be good to clarify:
    Yes, my enclosures contain just one vertical styrofoam board attached to one of the walls. It is a very minimalistic setup that suites my needs. However, it should be noted that the enclosure itself is not very big. In this case, the animal does not feel "exposed" and therefore there is no need for a hiding spot. In a big terrarium where the amblypygid can walk a lot the situation is different, and requires the addition of at least another board leaning diagonally on the vertical one.

    That being said, Damon diadema are not exactly known as great travelers. They usually stay in one spot, so they do not need much of a big enclosure.
  10. Aquarimax

    Aquarimax Arachnoangel

    In that case, my enclosure may be too big-one 12 x 18 cork panel along the back wall is all they've got. The side walls are covered in black paper, so it's pretty dim in there. Does that help, or should I look at changing the arrangement?
  11. wizentrop

    wizentrop to the rescue! Old Timer

    Although these animals are somewhat sensitive to light, they care more about how much they are out in the open. In the wild they squeeze into rock crevices and under loose tree bark. In your case, if the cork panel is flat (does not have any deep curves or spaces that the whip spider can squeeze into) in my opinion it would be better to add another panel resting on top of the first one or just besides it. It also means that you will be seeing your animals less.. Alternatively you can try and get a really curved piece of cork, it will not sit straight flat on your enclosure wall but will give the animal more options for resting without stress.
    • Like Like x 1
  12. Aquarimax

    Aquarimax Arachnoangel

    Thank you! For now, I have added a large, curved section of cork bark to the large enclosure. I will probably end up switching them over to smaller enclosures eventually, as I want to be able to see them.
  13. Nick H

    Nick H Arachnoknight

    So the idea is that they don't feel exposed as long as they're in a tight space, even if that tight space is transparent on three sides? Is it because their eyesight is that bad?
  14. wizentrop

    wizentrop to the rescue! Old Timer

    Correct. I am not suggesting this is true for all species, because it depends on their habitat preferences and unique biology. But for Damon diadema - yes.
    However, please do not go crazy right now and put their enclosure next to a lamp or a bright window. They have poor eyesight but they can still sense strong light. The case is different for blind (=eyeless) Amblypygi, but that's another story.
    • Informative Informative x 1
  15. Aquarimax

    Aquarimax Arachnoangel

    You mentioned in another thread that suitable enclosure size can be 15 x 15 x 18 cm. Is the 18 cm the height or the width?
    I want to be sure to provide enough molting space.
  16. wizentrop

    wizentrop to the rescue! Old Timer

    That is the height dimension. Because whip spiders do not spend much time on the ground, the bottom area can be even smaller than what I mentioned. So even a tall and narrow enclosure will be fine, as long as there is enough space for molting. I have enclosures that are 9cm width, very minimalistic, and the animals are perfectly fine with it.
    • Informative Informative x 1
  17. Also, just to be sure, how did you attach it to the sides vertically? Was it glue or another, more "safe" adhesive? And as long as they have height and a near vertical space for molting with a weekly- every other day misting to keep up humidity, it should be fine? Hoping to get multiple babies and raise them together. One last thing, are crickets a good idea? I hear that they specifically chew off their whips while roaches don't seem to as much. Is there a preference or am I just being weird?
  18. Aquarimax

    Aquarimax Arachnoangel

    @wizentrop , I believe, used sticky tape to attach the Styrofoam. I used aquarium silicone to attach the cork panel to the glass.

    My D. diadema receive crickets, never roaches, as my wife has vetoed the latter. For what it's worth, I've never had problems with crickets nibbling on my whiplings, but I am sure it happens, especially when a cricket is left with a molting ambly, or left too long with an ambly that is not hungry... never a good idea.

    Since you are planning on getting young ones:
    When my whiplings were tiny, I offered wingless fruit flies, which they accepted, but they seem to catch crickets more easily, and to prefer them as a prey item.

    I offered bean beetles as well, but I could never tell if they actually caught any.
  19. I also hear they can take huge crickets as babies. As fruit flies might be difficult for me personally, would micro crickets work?
  20. Aquarimax

    Aquarimax Arachnoangel

    Mine were not interested in/perhaps even intimidated by, the smallest size of crickets available at the pet shop (they don't stock pinheads), so I started breeding my own supply of tiny crickets. Now I can select the perfect size. :) IMHO, if they'll take crickets there's no reason to offer them fruit flies.

    Though I have never offered roaches, you might look into culturing a species nymphs similar in size to pinhead crickets.
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