Moisture Level and Burrowing for Brachypelma albopilosum

Jeff23

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Joined
Jul 27, 2016
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621
Is anyone else using some moisture on their B. albopilosum substrate and getting good results from it? I have noticed that most people preach the idea of water dish only with no moist substrate for all of Brachypelma genus. And while that probably works fine, mine just proved to me that it is happier with some moist substrate. I am curious on how much moisture and how often others provide for theirs. I don't want to over do it. This girl is the Honduran variety, but I also have slings in the Nicaraguan form so I am open for discussion on both of them.

The enclosure below has a half cylinder of cork bark angled into the substrate so that it was initially provided with an entrance on the right side. The same day I received my 2" female from Jamie, my girl immediately made use of the hide and covered the entrance. I have not seen her for four months and she had not eaten anything for the past couple months. I was a little worried so I moistened the left side of the substrate at the very end of the cylinder near the enclosure wall.



Less than a week later she created the mound below (approximately 2" high). There is a burrow entrance at the top of this mound. She also dumped a molt (removed) on the top of the mound. She ate a cricket as well. I can see where her burrow reached the side of the plastic down in the substrate, so I taped a flap to protect the burrow from light.



I think this proves that Brachypelma albopilosum will burrow if conditions are right rather than just using the available hide provided to them. My enclosure has about 7" of substrate.

I haven't found an accurate map of where the Honduran form resides in the wild. It looks like the Nicaraguan variety may get more rain in its wild version.

EDIT* Let me know if you can't see the pictures - I just opened a Flickr account.
 

Venom1080

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Sep 24, 2015
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all my B albos burrow till they hit about 3.5-4". then m oldest stopped and never tried again. i keep my albos dry with a water dish once they hit about 1.5".
 

EulersK

Arachnonomicon
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Feb 22, 2013
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3,290
That enclosure is 100% spot on.

I don't like the term "bone dry" for the most part. It ignores climate - where I live, bone dry will cut it with very few species. B. albopilosum is not one of those species. My girls do best on mildly moist substrate. I heavily overfill the water dish, let the surface dry out, and then overfill again. The lower levels of substrate never dry out completely. I'm glad that someone recorded a successful higher humidity enclosure.

I can't say that I share the sentiment with burrowing, however. Almost all my of my NW terrestrials get at least a little burrowing room, and I rarely get anything more than excavation. But I'm glad that this worked for you, clearly your spider needed to make a house a home.
 

Exoskeleton Invertebrates

Arachnoprince
Old Timer
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Jun 17, 2007
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1,080
All my sub adult and adults B. albopilosum are bone dry with the exception of my sling/juvie that I have it moist, until it grows a bit bigger she or he will be bone dry.
 

The Grym Reaper

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Jul 19, 2016
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I periodically moisten parts of the substrate in my girl's enclosure and then let it dry out again, when I did so near the back of her hide she excavated a chamber underneath it.

I find they're more tolerant of moisture than the other Brachys I own.
 

Crone Returns

Arachnoangel
Joined
Mar 22, 2016
Messages
990
I overflow -- like a flood -- the water dish. Mine's been known to be caught in the act of floating happily in her big water dish. I believe the extra water I spill makes her feel good lol. She's almost 6" dls now but still a kid where there's water.
:rolleyes:
 

Jeff23

Arachnolord
Joined
Jul 27, 2016
Messages
621
That enclosure is 100% spot on.

I don't like the term "bone dry" for the most part. It ignores climate - where I live, bone dry will cut it with very few species. B. albopilosum is not one of those species. My girls do best on mildly moist substrate. I heavily overfill the water dish, let the surface dry out, and then overfill again. The lower levels of substrate never dry out completely. I'm glad that someone recorded a successful higher humidity enclosure.

I can't say that I share the sentiment with burrowing, however. Almost all my of my NW terrestrials get at least a little burrowing room, and I rarely get anything more than excavation. But I'm glad that this worked for you, clearly your spider needed to make a house a home.
Great information! Thank you.

Maybe I misrepresented the term "burrowing" on this. I don't mean burrowing as in an elaborate group of tunnels like the "obligate" burrowers. What I mean by burrowing is they will dig down into the substrate to some degree.
 

Jeff23

Arachnolord
Joined
Jul 27, 2016
Messages
621
I periodically moisten parts of the substrate in my girl's enclosure and then let it dry out again, when I did so near the back of her hide she excavated a chamber underneath it.

I find they're more tolerant of moisture than the other Brachys I own.
I overflow -- like a flood -- the water dish. Mine's been known to be caught in the act of floating happily in her big water dish. I believe the extra water I spill makes her feel good lol. She's almost 6" dls now but still a kid where there's water.
:rolleyes:
Thanks. I think that seals it for me. I will provide mine a little moisture on sections of the substrate going forward.
 
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