Musings

EulersK

Arachnonomicon
Staff member
Joined
Feb 22, 2013
Messages
3,290
No one's perfect. It's a cliche, but it implies quite a bit. It means that you're always learning, no matter how much experience you have. I think most of us would get bored after awhile if we weren't learning. So what are you learning, working on, or perfecting right now? Doesn't need to have scientific backing, that's why this is in the Chat subforum. With any luck, we all may pick up a thing or two in the process.

For me, it's the balance of whatever type of ecosystem you'd call my T room... s. I recently converted a small walk-in closet to a hot/humid room. Roach farm, maternity ward, and incubator into a room. It's a 4'x4' room. Okay, separate story. I had fungus flies, but I took care of them... hopefully. But in the meantime the fungus gnats have spread to the hot room and on top of that I'm beginning to see phorid flies. Fungus gnats are harmless, but phorid flies aren't. I luckily know how to take care of them (because I've had them before), but I need to better figure out how to prevent them. Working on a combination of traps, cleanup crews, and more traps. Hoping it does the trick.

You're up.
 

Arachnophoric

Arachnoangel
Arachnosupporter +
Joined
Aug 29, 2016
Messages
955
Nothing special really, but I decided to keep thorough growth/molt records of my currently 0.75" Lasiodora parahybana sling. With all the rumors surrounding how fast/big they go but finding very little evidence to back it up (i.e. the elusive 10" LP or growing half that size in the first year) I figured it'd be a fun little pet project. And if it proves to be interesting enough, maybe I'll get some more slings to keep records on, and play a little with the variables. :)
 

Bugmom

Arachnolord
Joined
May 28, 2012
Messages
650
I have my first eggsac and the slings from it. They're all 1i now. They're adorable, but it's my first time actually making LIFE so, ya know, it's pretty cool and nerve wracking. I've previously received my slings from breeding loans.

I also tried to keep all my slings warmer by keeping them in a bathroom that gets warmer than the rest of the house. I lost a few to dehydration. I've since ditched keeping slings warmer than 74F.
 

Ungoliant

Malleus Aranearum
Staff member
Joined
Mar 7, 2012
Messages
3,825
I am looking into ways to improve my arboreal setups in anticipation of getting a new arboreal tarantula to replace the one that died due to a bad molt.
 

DrowsyLids

Arachnosquire
Joined
Dec 4, 2016
Messages
95
I am beginning to practice using isopods in my P. metallica enclosure and kind of just getting a feel for how well they thrive through dry spells. I'm hoping they will survive but if not I can always keep a separate culture ready which I might do anyway. Most of my T's are kept a little on the moist side and my P. machala definitely will be getting some when she (hoping she) moves into her permanent enclosure after some time.
 

Bugmom

Arachnolord
Joined
May 28, 2012
Messages
650
I am beginning to practice using isopods in my P. metallica enclosure and kind of just getting a feel for how well they thrive through dry spells. I'm hoping they will survive but if not I can always keep a separate culture ready which I might do anyway. Most of my T's are kept a little on the moist side and my P. machala definitely will be getting some when she (hoping she) moves into her permanent enclosure after some time.
I'm moving a lot of my reptiles and inverts to bioactive setups with isopods and springtails, so I have several cultures of isopods (different species) and springtails going. I'm finding that to be as fun as keeping tarantulas. But I love isopods. Pillbugs and woodlice are adorable. I have 3-4 different species of woodlice at the moment.

I've found that springtails still live through dry spells well, they just don't seem to breed in those conditions. Orange isopods (P. scabers) do VERY poorly if it gets dry :(
 

DrowsyLids

Arachnosquire
Joined
Dec 4, 2016
Messages
95
I'm moving a lot of my reptiles and inverts to bioactive setups with isopods and springtails, so I have several cultures of isopods (different species) and springtails going. I'm finding that to be as fun as keeping tarantulas. But I love isopods. Pillbugs and woodlice are adorable. I have 3-4 different species of woodlice at the moment.

I've found that springtails still live through dry spells well, they just don't seem to breed in those conditions. Orange isopods (P. scabers) do VERY poorly if it gets dry :(
I'm working with dwarf white isopods forgive me I don't know them by scientific name. I have access to springtails and I'm not opposed to making a switch later down the road. I'm just fairly new with these guys, I literally introduced the first ones about two weeks ago and they seem well so far.
 

johnny quango

Arachnoknight
Joined
May 17, 2013
Messages
262
I've started putting things into place for later down the line when I want to breed certain species, This may sound a little crazy because any breeding projects I'm hoping to start in the future are around 18 months away but it also means on the 2 species I'm thinking of breeding I have to be extra careful with husbandry which in turn keeps me even more concentrated than normal
 

nicodimus22

Arachnomancer
Arachnosupporter
Joined
Sep 26, 2013
Messages
709
I'm trying to get good at sexing Ts, because I SUCK at it. I have never been able to sex my Grammostolas. My pulchra was a 4.75" MM before I knew he was a boy. Those tibial hooks are a dead giveaway. My pulchripes is 4" now and I still have no idea what it is because the molt is always a shredded, clumped together mess that I can't even begin to make sense of. Can't even see book lungs, let alone anything else. Need to figure out how to get it spread out into a form that I can see features on. I just got a handheld microscope and I'm hoping that I can sex them before the 2 inch mark.
 
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Nightstalker47

Arachnoking
Joined
Jul 2, 2016
Messages
2,611
I'm trying to get good at sexing Ts, because I SUCK at it. I have never been able to sex my Grammostolas. My pulchra was a 4.75" MM before I knew he was a boy. Those tibial hooks are a dead giveaway. My pulchripes is 4" now and I still have no idea what it is because the molt is always a shredded, clumped together mess that I can't even begin to make sense of. Can't even see book lungs, let alone anything else. Need to figure out how to get it spread out into a form that I can see features on.
At 4 inches your G. pulchripes is at a size where you should be able to at least suspect gender. All you need to do is get a good look at the ventral. I have been learning a lot lately on tarantula sexing, truth is that many species show features at a young age that may indicate sex, of course this is not 100% but I have gotten lucky in a few scenarios, many people worry that if they buy one sling they will get a male.

Thing is if you can get a good look at the ventral side of a few slings odds are with time you may be able to spot more young female specimens. With expensive Ts like Theraphosa's or Pamphoboteus I have been very successful at buying young unsexed slings and winding up with a female. Other species like P. ornata and P.regalis show signs early through coloration difference. This has allowed me to save good money on avoiding sexed females, there are usually small signs if your able to read them. Still haven't had a male T mature on me by surprise, always see it coming. With time you should get the hang of it. And examining the molt will be easier if you let it soften first in a luke warm water solution.
 

Paiige

Arachnobaron
Joined
Oct 2, 2016
Messages
331
Even though it's a ways down the line, I'm going to be breeding my H. incei. In the meantime I'm learning everything I can about the breeding process, as well as incubation and everything that goes into taking care of the eggs and then the little babies once they're EWLs. I learned a little bit with my MM G. pulchra but this I will be doing solo so it's a bit more intimidating.

And this isn't really learning, but I took some of the Ts out for a photoshoot the other day. Got a big, shallow plastic tote and filled it with sub and cork bark and moss to try to create an aesthetically appealing habitat and I learned a lot just being so close with my Ts and with them more out in the open. I think I learned a lot about their reactions to their environment. I'm not big on handling but will let (some of) them walk on my hands if they try to get out during tank maintenance but that's about the most "intimate" I get with them so this was a nice little "personal" experience. I'm also still learning how to use my camera, since photographing Ts is the reason I have it in the first place.

I'm also still, constantly, forever learning patience. Patience when things don't go the way they should, or the way I expect them to. This will be a lifelong endeavor.

Lastly...I will be picking up several A. geniculata slings on my next T run. I really want to document the differences in individual growth and personalities.
 

nicodimus22

Arachnomancer
Arachnosupporter
Joined
Sep 26, 2013
Messages
709
At 4 inches your G. pulchripes is at a size where you should be able to at least suspect gender. All you need to do is get a good look at the ventral.
Mine hasn't climbed the glass since it was maybe 2-2.5 inches, so that's not an option.

examining the molt will be easier if you let it soften first in a luke warm water solution.
I've tried this and it didn't help. It just made it fall apart.
 

Nightstalker47

Arachnoking
Joined
Jul 2, 2016
Messages
2,611
Mine hasn't climbed the glass since it was maybe 2-2.5 inches, so that's not an option.



I've tried this and it didn't help. It just made it fall apart.
You must be leaving the exuvia in for too long, you just want it soften up not turn to mush. if you can coax your G.pulchripes onto the glass and get a clear picture I'm sure we could help.
 

Hellblazer

Arachnosquire
Joined
May 13, 2016
Messages
134
I never had any OW arboreal species (I've had various terrestrial baboons and Asian fossorials), so I recently bought a T. gigas and a P. irminia to ease my way into it. I'm enjoying them so far and might just end up getting more of those instead.
 

Paiige

Arachnobaron
Joined
Oct 2, 2016
Messages
331
Mine hasn't climbed the glass since it was maybe 2-2.5 inches, so that's not an option.
I've tried this and it didn't help. It just made it fall apart.
I never soak my molts because that happened to me as well. I "hotbox" them (don't know if that helps) - cup it in my hands and use my breath to warm it up - same way you'd keep the outside leaf moist if you were rolling a cigar - or *lightly* mist it. I've found it helps it be more pliable if it's warm as opposed to just sopping wet.

I also use very small tools and slowly position the molt under a magnifying glass or microscope depending on the size. Patience is the most important part or you'll end up tearing it.

These are the tools I use (not these specifically but you get the idea), as well as tiny needle nose pliars and a literal needle or pin.
http://images1.sculpturedepot.net/images/1b_4b_3b.png

That is, assuming they haven't chewed it to bits.
 

Nightstalker47

Arachnoking
Joined
Jul 2, 2016
Messages
2,611
So what are you learning, working on, or perfecting right now? Doesn't need to have scientific backing, that's why this is in the Chat subforum. With any luck, we all may pick up a thing or two in the process.
My latest focus has been on finding the right balance of Temps/humidity in my T room. Since I live in Montreal we have a very harsh winter, my house gets drier from heating and the ambient temps are around 67 degrees inside, I like to keep my T room warmer then that. I have a space heater in my T room but I get paranoid leaving it on for too long some days as I don't want to dry the air out. I find myself constantly worrying about moisture levels, at least my T room is in the basement so it's always a little more humid. It can get quite dry in the house, so I keep my Ts more moist this time of year. Maybe I'm just being paranoid but it's something that concerns me day to day.
 

Andy00

Arachnoknight
Joined
Feb 4, 2016
Messages
154
I'm starting to get REALLY into macro photography. It's just super fun and interesting to me. I'm also thinking about selling some T's to make space and my mom wants me to sell my whole collection so I don't have to try to get someone to take care of all my T's if I go on a gap year. I made a compromise to sell most and keep only really hardy species that don't need that much humidity or food. I'll probably be keeping my B albopilosum subadult female, adult female p cambridgei, OBT juvenile female, and my Scorpions Hottentatta H, 2 h spinigerus, and c vittatus. I'll just teach my dad how to give them water and food once in a while if they need it. I'm thinking about keeping my subadult female C versicolor but I'm not sure she's hardy enough. Other than that I'm just waiting for my N Incei to drop an egg sac :)
 

Attachments

viper69

ArachnoGod
Old Timer
Joined
Dec 8, 2006
Messages
11,539
Mine hasn't climbed the glass since it was maybe 2-2.5 inches, so that's not an option.



I've tried this and it didn't help. It just made it fall apart.
I never soak my molts because that happened to me as well. I "hotbox" them (don't know if that helps) - cup it in my hands and use my breath to warm it up - same way you'd keep the outside leaf moist if you were rolling a cigar - or *lightly* mist it. I've found it helps it be more pliable if it's warm as opposed to just sopping wet.

I also use very small tools and slowly position the molt under a magnifying glass or microscope depending on the size. Patience is the most important part or you'll end up tearing it.

These are the tools I use (not these specifically but you get the idea), as well as tiny needle nose pliars and a literal needle or pin.
http://images1.sculpturedepot.net/images/1b_4b_3b.png

That is, assuming they haven't chewed it to bits.

Have you both tried adding a bit of soap to the water before adding the molt? I've done that, no issues.
 
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