Incredible: My H Mac lives underwater!!!

Merfolk

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This morning I witnessed somekind of a T keeper wetdream : ) wish I had a cam..

It started yesterday when I decided to flood the burrow of my 2 inches HM since I was unable to move the crossed barks without crushing her and I really didn't want to poke there, so I just held my cylindrical 1 gallon KK under the tap...and put a bit too much:8o. I put a good two inches+ of water before I could turn off my tap (kind of old and leaky) and turned the whole substrate into a dark soup from wich my T emerged for the first time since its molt one month ago (barely ate since then, I was worrying...).

Having it on the side, I could sex it (i assume female) and see that it was healty (pretty swift like always!). So I decided to simply let the water evaporate since it had started to web in a cranny up the bark and went to bed. This morning, I looked in the KK and didn't find my spider until I knelt and looked horizontaly at the bottom part.

There were three distinct layers: Floating bits of wood and earth making a tick mat at the surface, heavier chuncks at the bottom and in between, a relatively clear layer of water about 1.5 inch deep...and there she was!
She was walking the bottom, covered with a shiny layer of air (those who saw pics of Dolomedes underwater will understand me)
Even though she couldn't make web underwater, she kind of managed to toss chunks to build some kind of hide where she swiftly retreated from my flashlight, faster than any actual aquatic arthropod I ever saw while diving! She was moving along easily, obvious of the fact that she was under two inches of water.

Now, the best part : Out of curiosity, I dropped a cricket in the tank and I was watching it struggle its way accross the raft of debris when the water stirred behind it like if there was a trout after it. Kneeling again, I witnessed my T litteraly stalking the crix, crawling upside down underneath the mat, poking through it to try to catch the crix. It kept following it around the tank until the bug managed to climb up the bark. Then my spider retreated to the bottom, back to it's underwater hole. I kept watching for a while and stayed around for most of the day. I went on errands and back... To this moment, she never put more than one articulation above water. She actally seems more active underwater than the days before...

This is wacky!
 
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TalonAWD

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You have to get pics or better yet a youtube video of this.
 

Pociemon

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Yes a pic or video wood be great.

I know poecilotheria ornata uses water holes in the trees to flee from predators, and are seen submerged for up till 20 minutes. So maybe it is the same here!
 

Merfolk

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Woke up this morning and she was still under water, yet it had evaporated and goit more saturated with debris and the mud grew ticker. At around noon she finaly emerged and webed in open air under her bark. When I have a camera I will repeat the experiment for sure. Only, the cricket is still alive and she doen't bother chasing it the same way she did yesterday. Reminded me of a scene in the movie Alien!
 

gmrpnk21

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That's pretty crazy. I wonder if it had problems walking underwater? I keep thinking of trying to walk on the bottom of a pool...
 

Merfolk

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She was clinging to the substrate, I didn't see her swimming per see and there wasn't much open space down there actually. But I will do a similar experiment soon.

I have a HUGE veritical hexagonal tank that is at least 30 liters (don't know much about gallons passed one haha) and is like 3 feet high, will set it for arboreals and will keep the bottom flooded this way, but like 5-6 inches deep. I intend to house my rufilata there and mate her to get a mutigenerational communal (if it makes it there). But first I will take my H mac there for some serious underwater filming operation : )
 

AgentD006las

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I have to say this goes to show how reclusive H. macs can be. :eek:
This reminds me of the movie "predator" when Arnold is covered in mud hiding. {D
 

gmrpnk21

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She was clinging to the substrate, I didn't see her swimming per see and there wasn't much open space down there actually. But I will do a similar experiment soon.

I have a HUGE veritical hexagonal tank that is at least 30 liters (don't know much about gallons passed one haha) and is like 3 feet high, will set it for arboreals and will keep the bottom flooded this way, but like 5-6 inches deep. I intend to house my rufilata there and mate her to get a mutigenerational communal (if it makes it there). But first I will take my H mac there for some serious underwater filming operation : )
Well that's one way to keep humidity up! Post how it goes, I would just be worried about an accidental drowning.
 

Hentzi

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That's pretty interesting stuff you should get some pictures and some videos and keep it well documented may be very valuble to someone researching the SP.
 

Megan 03

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very cool indeed, but why would you try to force your t out of its hide, to me attempting to flush your t out of its hide seems pretty harsh to the t. I am new to keeping t's is there some purpose for this.
 

shanebp

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very cool indeed, but why would you try to force your t out of its hide, to me attempting to flush your t out of its hide seems pretty harsh to the t. I am new to keeping t's is there some purpose for this.
You sure you read the thread? :rolleyes:

I decided to flood the burrow of my 2 inches HM since I was unable to move the crossed barks without crushing her and I really didn't want to poke there
 

Suidakkra

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very cool indeed, but why would you try to force your t out of its hide, to me attempting to flush your t out of its hide seems pretty harsh to the t. I am new to keeping t's is there some purpose for this.
He was removing to have it sexed, plus the fact it had not exited since it molt an month before, she was being rather difficult it seems and it was the safest way of removing her because of fear of injuring, and destroying her burrow.

Flooding is used by Entomologist in the field, once the T feels the water in their burrow they will usually exit. Entomologist will generally poor a small amount of water into the burrow to get the T to exit, mostly they will exit to the first dry area of the burrow, which in turn, they are then coaxed out with a prod of some sort, usually a heavy wire (coat hanger straightened) with a safety loop on the end.
 

Merfolk

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Thank you!

As for drowning, well my H mac seemed pretty buoyant and had to hold on to whatever she could to remain submerged. But I assume that a T left floating in a tank with no mean to get out of the water will eventualy die, since it breathes from its ventral side and I don't think that it would have the reflex to play the plank belly up : ) Therefore that huge tank I plan to set will have a central hollow trunk glued to the bottom, so any unvolontary swimmer can get back up to its branch. Noticing that she went back to the exact location of her lair, I think I should let her settle in the bottom of a empty tank and then fill it. Also I would monitor what maximum depht it could endure. I don't think that those animals can dive very deep since their opistoma is not shaped to withstand huge external pressure. There surely is a point where some internal organs would be damaged so I will limit it to a max of 8 inches (the equivalent of 30 feet for a human, beyond this point we have to decompress after some time). Perhaps 6" would be enough for proper observation.

Funny fact: Except for Hysterocrates species, all the Ts that I have seen or heard about that willfully went in/on the water were arboreals!!! I though it would be more a feature of the swamp dwellers! I am pretty sure that a P metallica would shine with this layer of air on : )
 

jbm150

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Flooding is used by Entomologist in the field, once the T feels the water in their burrow they will usually exit.
Hehe I wish my Ts did this, I gave up on the flooding technique. The Ts I've tried it on just sat underwater til I lost my patience and went in after 'em :rolleyes:

As for drowning, well my H mac seemed pretty buoyant and had to hold on to whatever she could to remain submerged. But I assume that a T left floating in a tank with no mean to get out of the water will eventualy die, since it breathes from its ventral side and I don't think that it would have the reflex to play the plank belly up : ) Therefore that huge tank I plan to set will have a central hollow trunk glued to the bottom, so any unvolontary swimmer can get back up to its branch. Noticing that she went back to the exact location of her lair, I think I should let her settle in the bottom of a empty tank and then fill it. Also I would monitor what maximum depht it could endure. I don't think that those animals can dive very deep since their opistoma is not shaped to withstand huge external pressure. There surely is a point where some internal organs would be damaged so I will limit it to a max of 8 inches (the equivalent of 30 feet for a human, beyond this point we have to decompress after some time). Perhaps 6" would be enough for proper observation.
You don't have to worry about pressure. As long as they don't have any internal air pockets in their abdomen, they won't be subject to any pressure effects. The only area that would be a concern, if I'm not mistaken, are their book lungs. They might collapse if too deep. But I don't think they'd subject themselves to that even if the water was deep enough. They might stay submerged just long enough to exhaust the oxygen supply held around their body. After which, I would hope they have the sense to come back up. But maybe not, she may slowly drown....

One thing you might want to keep in mind, if you keep it with standing water, you're going to have algae start to grow. As it stagnates, you might start finding other unpleasant effects as well. Just stuff to keep in mind.
 

Merfolk

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Thanks again, it's really something I'll have to adress if I do it.

The diving bell spider have been spotted under a full meter of water. Grossly calculated, it's like 100 m for a human. But most of the time is spent within 1 foot from the surface. It's the only spider to do so on a constant basis, but I think most sp could adapt to underwater conditions for a little while (save for Grammostola sp {D ) I also think that past a certain size, living underwater would become increasingly difficult.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diving_bell_spider
 

Venom1080

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wow! that is truly incredible! i know theres water spiders and whatnot, but a tarantula underwater if its own will is unheard of. would love some pics.
 

cold blood

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a tarantula underwater if its own will is unheard of.
No its not....see Hysterocrates genus, they're quite known for this, even diving into and under water when spooked. There are many easily found vids of this.

You won't likely get pics here from a thread that died 4 years ago.
 
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