Is my whip scorpion gravid?

Arachnoenthusiast

Arachnosquire
Joined
Feb 7, 2020
Messages
88
I'm a new keeper. Received this whip scorpion by mistake in an order. Recently while doing some enclosure maintenance I noticed something weird on its abdomen. Is this an egg sac? I've only had it for a couple weeks but I believe this sac? Has grown. Best picture I could get without disturbing it too much. Any help would be appreciated 20200206_185106.jpg
 

wizentrop

to the rescue!
Old Timer
Joined
Apr 20, 2005
Messages
325
Yes, this is an egg sac. Best not to disturb it during this time. It might even refuse to take any food until the eggs hatch, which takes around 3-5 months.
 

chanda

Arachnoprince
Active Member
Joined
Jun 27, 2010
Messages
1,969
Congratulations! Even if you received her by mistake, I hope you are enjoying her. Whip spiders are some of my favorite arachnids!

While she is carrying eggs, be sure to keep her humidity up. You don't want soaked substrate or condensation dripping off the walls or stuff getting moldy - but the substrate should be slightly moist. While whip spiders can normally tolerate drier conditions, when they are gravid, if it's too dry you may lose the sac. You should mist her cork bark a couple of times a week, to allow her to drink from the water droplets. (At least with mine, I've noticed that they prefer this over drinking from a water dish.)

She may or may not eat while carrying eggs. I have Damon diadema, and they usually do eat while gravid - but I offer them smaller crickets during this time than I would when they are not "in a family way."

You should keep disturbances to a minimum. Open the cage as little as possible, and don't take her out to look at her. She will appreciate a dark space to hide - like the gap between two loosely-stacked slabs of cork bark. While it can be a little disappointing when your pet is hiding and you don't get to see her as often, it is better is the long run to keep her feeling secure and comfortable.

It can take up to six months after fertilization for the eggs to hatch - but her brood pouch looks pretty swollen, so she's well on her way. When the eggs hatch, the hatchlings will climb out onto their mother's back and you'll see a big, greenish mass covering her abdomen. They will ride around on her until their first molt. During this time the young will not eat - and any that fall off will die.

Eventually they will molt, at which point they will leave her back and scurry off on their own - and there will be a bunch of them! I have found that it's best to separate them from the mother at this point - otherwise she may start eating them. Once they have molted, they will be hungry - so you'll need appropriately sized prey, such as fruit flies or pinhead crickets. With very young whip spiders that are eating fruit flies, I usually feed them every 2-3 days.

The young can be kept communally for a while, as long as food is plentiful and they have plenty of hiding places. I like to give them multiple slabs of thick, rough cork bark with plenty of holes and crevices for them to hide in - not that really thin, smooth stuff. There may be some losses due to cannibalism, but for the most part, they seem to tolerate each other fairly well - at least for a while. As they get bigger, they can progress to larger prey items - and can be fed less often. As they start approaching the large juvenile/sub-adult stage, cannibalism does seem to become more common - so I would suggest separating them before they get to that point.
 

Arachnoenthusiast

Arachnosquire
Joined
Feb 7, 2020
Messages
88
Congratulations! Even if you received her by mistake, I hope you are enjoying her. Whip spiders are some of my favorite arachnids!

While she is carrying eggs, be sure to keep her humidity up. You don't want soaked substrate or condensation dripping off the walls or stuff getting moldy - but the substrate should be slightly moist. While whip spiders can normally tolerate drier conditions, when they are gravid, if it's too dry you may lose the sac. You should mist her cork bark a couple of times a week, to allow her to drink from the water droplets. (At least with mine, I've noticed that they prefer this over drinking from a water dish.)

She may or may not eat while carrying eggs. I have Damon diadema, and they usually do eat while gravid - but I offer them smaller crickets during this time than I would when they are not "in a family way."

You should keep disturbances to a minimum. Open the cage as little as possible, and don't take her out to look at her. She will appreciate a dark space to hide - like the gap between two loosely-stacked slabs of cork bark. While it can be a little disappointing when your pet is hiding and you don't get to see her as often, it is better is the long run to keep her feeling secure and comfortable.

It can take up to six months after fertilization for the eggs to hatch - but her brood pouch looks pretty swollen, so she's well on her way. When the eggs hatch, the hatchlings will climb out onto their mother's back and you'll see a big, greenish mass covering her abdomen. They will ride around on her until their first molt. During this time the young will not eat - and any that fall off will die.

Eventually they will molt, at which point they will leave her back and scurry off on their own - and there will be a bunch of them! I have found that it's best to separate them from the mother at this point - otherwise she may start eating them. Once they have molted, they will be hungry - so you'll need appropriately sized prey, such as fruit flies or pinhead crickets. With very young whip spiders that are eating fruit flies, I usually feed them every 2-3 days.

The young can be kept communally for a while, as long as food is plentiful and they have plenty of hiding places. I like to give them multiple slabs of thick, rough cork bark with plenty of holes and crevices for them to hide in - not that really thin, smooth stuff. There may be some losses due to cannibalism, but for the most part, they seem to tolerate each other fairly well - at least for a while. As they get bigger, they can progress to larger prey items - and can be fed less often. As they start approaching the large juvenile/sub-adult stage, cannibalism does seem to become more common - so I would suggest separating them before they get to that point.
About how many babies should I be expecting?
 
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