My sling won't budge...

Allie Lastbeat

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I received my first T by mail on Thursday (a G. pulchripes!). I set him up in his new home and left him alone for a few days. I checked on him today to see how he's doing and he seems to be sluggish. I dropped a pinhead in, but it ran right over the top of him and he didn't even move. I nudged him a bit, but he just sits in his peat moss and won't budge.

I followed all of the instructions I received from the breeder and the Tarantula Keeper's guide, so I'm pretty confident that his home is good (substrate, access to water, etc), but I'm worried about the temperature. I live in a house with central ac which is on constantly. Should I think about an external heat source for the little guy?

Or this just another case of a first-time mother overreacting?
 

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mistertim

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Yes, you're overreacting. :)

Just leave it be and let it settle in. Tarantulas can take a while to do that...remember its a pretty major shakeup in their world. Imagine if you were suddenly taken out of your home and dropped into a completely new one. You'd be stressed and it would take you time to adjust. Just make sure it has clean water and leave it be...preferably in a relatively dark area. Wait a few days before trying to feed it again. I assume it has a hide, right?

As far as additional sources of heat, unless it is super cold in your house you don't need it. If it is very cold (can you give us the temp inside your house?) and you feel the need for external heat just get a small space heater. Whatever you do, don't do any heat mats, etc.
 

Tarantula20

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Yes, you're overreacting. :)
As the person before said there is no need to worry unless your temps are getting into the mid to low sixties or below for long periods of time he will be absolutely fine, If its is less then this invest in a small room heater trust me when the hobby addiction kicks in it will be a worthy investment lol.
 

Allie Lastbeat

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Yes, you're overreacting. :)
Thanks. I figured that was probably the case. I'll just go have a beer or two.

The thermostat is set to 69 degrees at its coldest.

Little Pablo has a chunk of peat moss to hide under/in.

He's on a shelf in the back of my closet where it's relatively shielded from direct light.

Oh, and he just ate the 2 pinheads.

Looks like he's fine. Thanks for the support :)
 
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lunarae

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I would say the temps could be why it's a little slower moving, it does effect them. I noticed mine have become a lot more active now that it's like 80+ degrees (we don't have AC) But 69 isn't anything to worry about from my understanding, if that's the lowest it gets in your house. glad to see he ate. I wish I could get my slings to eat regularly but then again all of them recently were getting ready to molt. Literally everyone has molted so far except the B. smithi within the past month and I have 5 total, and the B. smithi has holed itself up so it's on it's way as well I'm sure. Hopefully they'll have better appetites here in a week for me. XD I get antsy and worried as well and I've been a T owner since last September so you're not alone in that.
 

Vanessa

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Thanks. I figured that was probably the case. I'll just go have a beer or two.
The thermostat is set to 69 degrees at its coldest.
Little Pablo has a chunk of peat moss to hide under/in.
He's on a shelf in the back of my closet where it's relatively shielded from direct light.
Oh, and he just ate the 2 pinheads.
Looks like he's fine. Thanks for the support :)
Those temps are low and, while maybe not dangerous, will result in less activity and slower growth than at higher temperatures. Please double check that they are not in the direct path of airflow from vents at that temperature because that will not be good. I would put something else in there for them to hide under, even it if is a fake leaf. Little spiderlings are very vulnerable and being out in the open is not something that they want to be. Even adults feel safer with a hide and that is exponentially higher for spiderlings.
 

viper69

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The abdomen size is OK, but not fat. I like slings to have a fat one. It helps prevent against dehydration. Your temps are a bit low IMO, thus its metabolism will be lower than usual.

Make sure it has a water bowl.

Also, you haven't owned it that long, they require time to adjust to their new digs. It may go vertical for a while as well.

A picture of its entire home would be useful.
 

Allie Lastbeat

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I would say the temps could be why it's a little slower moving, it does effect them.
Those temps are low and, while maybe not dangerous, will result in less activity and slower growth than at higher temperatures. Please double check that they are not in the direct path of airflow from vents at that temperature because that will not be good.
The abdomen size is OK, but not fat. I like slings to have a fat one. It helps prevent against dehydration. Your temps are a bit low IMO, thus its metabolism will be lower than usual.
If I wanted to raise the temp, what would be the best way to do that? I could lobby the roommates to raise the temp, but likely only by a few degrees (probably to about 72 degrees or so). Is that enough to make a difference? Pablo is currently in my closet, which doesn't have a door, but he's tucked away in the back corner on a shelf out of direct air flow and light. I'm wondering if I could raise the temp in the closet, but have no idea how to do that without a door... I'm eager to get him plump, too, and raising the temp. should encourage his appetite, right?

I would put something else in there for them to hide under, even it if is a fake leaf.
Gotcha. There's a good but of peat moss in there on top of the substrate. He's burrowed into it and has been hiding underneath. I'll put a little silk leaf in there, too, though.

Make sure it has a water bowl.
Ah. This is something I've been confused about. At what size do they get their own water bowl? I've seen mixed responses. I've been misting the sides of his enclosure, and the top layer of his substrate is dry but under layers are damp. The care sheet that came with him and in the Tarantula Keeper's Guide that he's too small for a water bowl, yet. He's about 3/4" right now. Thoughts?

Pictures:
1. Lid (so you can see his ventilation situation)
Lid.jpg

2. His mossy hideaway (the little hole in the center is where he hides out)
Peat.jpg

3. Overview of his enclosure
Overview.jpg

4. Overview after I just added a silk plant to give him more options for hiding.
Overview2.jpg
 

cold blood

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The sling actually looks freshly molted...I always feed freshly molted tsp prior to shipping...they're usually very motivated by food, but this one may have just needed more time.

Put it somewhere warmer, not much, just enough to keep it consistently over 70.
 
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cold blood

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You need to change that lid out, it's very much over ventilated, focus your ventilation on the sides, the lid should be relatively ventilation free.

A water dish should be added as soon as the enclosure is large enough for one...yours is large enough....ts can't drown, they float.
 
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Haemus

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I'm eager to get him plump, too, and raising the temp. should encourage his appetite, right?
Yup, I use a space heater, but I'd keep them out of the closet though, don't want that air getting stagnant.

Congrats on the G. pulchripes :)
 

Allie Lastbeat

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Alright.

Here we go:
IMG_2459.JPG

I've also moved him out of my room and into the garage. It's the only place without AC. We're averaging in the low 80's during the day.

If he's got a water bowl, do I need to continue to mist the substrate?

Thanks, everyone, for the support! Y'all are great!
 

Vanessa

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That looks good and he should be happier in the warmer temperatures. Just keep an eye that they don't get too high.
He doesn't need to be misted and most tarantulas shouldn't be misted at all. The water dish will provide enough moisture. Now that you have holes on the side, you can cover the ventilation in the lid. I would not cover it 100%, but maybe about 50%. Put the covered part of the lid over the water dish so it doesn't evaporate too quickly.
It looks good. Just keep an eye on him out in the garage.
 

Vanessa

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You've made an excellent choice for your first tarantula. They are an awesome species. Fairly calm, get to be one of the bigger tarantulas, and they are normally out where you can see them when they get to be a bit older. I have two - one male and one female - and I absolutely adore them both. They are wonderful and very tolerant to some of the mistakes that new people can make. :)
My juvenile female, Portia.
View media item 34326
 

cold blood

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I would cover the lid ventilation, too much will cause the enclosure to dry out unnaturally fast.

Water dish is fine, but I also occasionally dampen part of the sub for smaller ones like this....by two inches I start to keep em drier.
 

Allie Lastbeat

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You've made an excellent choice for your first tarantula.
Thanks, I thought so :) I did my research first.

Your juvie is gorgeous!

I would cover the lid ventilation, too much will cause the enclosure to dry out unnaturally fast.

Water dish is fine, but I also occasionally dampen part of the sub for smaller ones like this....by two inches I start to keep em drier.
Thanks for your help! I gave him a water bowl and will continue to make sure his substrate is a little damp in at least part.


I checked on my little guy this morning and he was taking a stroll around his enclosure! :astonished:
 

viper69

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@Allie Lastbeat nice looking T home for Pablo. Coldblood knows what he's doing, he's bred this species as well. He's answered the questions you had for me. If you have others post back here. Good water dish too.
 
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mistertim

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Yup, I use a space heater, but I'd keep them out of the closet though, don't want that air getting stagnant.

Congrats on the G. pulchripes :)
I don't see how them being in or out of the closet is any of your business.
 
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