- Sep 18, 2002
Is it possible to neuter male tarantulas so that they will live longer?
Much is made of the inherent longevity, or lack of it, in a T. This seems to be expressed by a concern of what sex it is, because females widely outlive males, often by a factor of ten. People want T's that live long and will alter their behavior to ensure that. For example, people buy more slings than they would like to be guaranteed of getting at least one female. People get T's older than they would like so they can be certain its sex. When a juvenile gets sexed, people often express sadness if it turns out a male, regarding this as a type of "death sentence". If there were a surgical way to alter male T's so that they might live longer, I think many people would be interested in getting that done. People certainly do it with cats. Therefore, I think there is some justification for scientific inquiry on the subject.Originally posted by Code Monkey
But, why on Earth would you want to do something like this?
Well, you just go and find that funding. Anyone who funds scientific inquiry into a surgical procedure that would cost, estimated, 5X the most expensive sling out there needs their money taken away from them. I'm not even going to go into the time, money, and research needed to even figure out what you would need to snip exactly.Originally posted by Tranz
Therefore, I think there is some justification for scientific inquiry on the subject.
I think a lot of people spend upwards of a hundred dollars to get their cats neutered, even though they didn't even pay anything for the cat, or bought it for $5.00Originally posted by Code Monkey
Well, you just go and find that funding. Anyone who funds scientific inquiry into a surgical procedure that would cost, estimated, 5X the most expensive sling out there needs their money taken away from them.
Again, though, a LOT of research, money, and time to study something that there isn't a real demand for. Scientific inquiry is one of the most expensive ventures out there because it bleeds money out the ass, rarely produces anything, and even when it does, rarely makes any money.
Those people have an emotional connection to that cat. They also see the benefits of not making more kittens needlessly. Emotional attachment to Ts, for people in a position to pay for the surgery? I don't see it. The second issue doesn't even begin to apply.Originally posted by Tranz
I think a lot of people spend upwards of a hundred dollars to get their cats neutered, even though they didn't even pay anything for the cat, or bought it for $5.00
Well, as someone who had done modern research on *yeast* which has even less constraints on it than a spider, we spent about $400,000 just to publish a single paper in the Journal of Biological Chemistry. Taxonomy and behavioral science is within the realm of the hobbyist. If someone felt like maiming and killing a lot of Ts, I'd even go so far as to agree that rudimentary surgical techniques could be worked out. But, that's not what you are looking for: you are looking for a "magic bullet" that not just neuters a male tarantula, but makes it live as long as a female. Right there you've got 20+ year project in the works and you're going to tell me you think that doesn't cost money. It's cheaper and more doable than curing cancer, but it's not a realistic project for the hobbyist to do - it requires access to chemicals and equipment that in and of themselves cost $1000s of dollars.Also, in the distant past, most scientific research was done by individuals as a hobby. I don't think a scientist dealing with spiders has nearly the constaints or financial demands as one dealing with humans or other large mammals. I think this is an ideal subject for a vet or a biologist/zoologist to tackle in his, or her, spare time.
The days of the hobbyist researcher are largely done and over with. That which can done in your garage has been, and that which can't is very often regulated to the point that no one without the proper credentials is even allowed to tinker with it. In this case, it's a problem that doesn't need solving - nothing changes in the world for the better or worse by discovering the magic bullet of T neutering. In fact, while I can't say I've surveyed 1000s of T owners, you would be the first person I've ever seen express an interest in this. You could spend the next forty years perfecting and proving your technique and find that it gets a quick publication in an arachnology journal and never sees one application in the pet trade. Again, interesting idea, really, really pointless and impractical.Ever heard of Madame Curie? Perhaps one day there'll be a Madame T.
Eh, neutering that is ^Originally posted by Tranz
People certainly do it with cats.
On average, they wind up living somewhat longer due to the fact they're not nearly as likely to be shot, run over, poisoned, or otherwise whacked as they do everything in their power to knock up every female cat in a 3 mile radius, or get in quite so many fights, or that or their owner doesn't smack them in the head because they pissed on the leather sofa one too many timesOriginally posted by ArachnoJoost
To my knowledge (but I can be wrong) cat's don't live longer by neutering them.
And a tarantula can't be operated like a cat, which has bloodvessels you can avoid, I think a T would bleed to death.
Has there been any conclusive proof that inbreeding in T's causes problems? Even with spiders in the wild if a 1000 slings are produced and disperse over an area, whats to stop them from comming back to each other and mating later?Originally posted by invertepet
It's highly likely that tarantula lifespan is far better controlled with feeding regulation and living environs. I've had a P. formosa immature for over a year now. It was 2" when I bought it, and it's MAYBE 2.75" now. I keep it cool-ish, dry and feed only once or twice a month.
Conversely, I had two 1.5" P. fasciatas back in the early 90's. They were pretty scarce on these shores, so I decided to breed them (even tho they were from the same batch). I got the female to sexual maturity (albeit somewhat small, about 5.5") in about 10 months, along with the male. I fed them both daily. The resulting eggsac had 75 healthy babies.
That is another possible criticism, but I doubt that very many males get sent out now proportionately. The people who would be willing to try and breed would also be the same sort of people who wouldn't bother to "castrate" their boys in the first place.Originally posted by Lycanthrope
i would think even if a cheap and affordable form of "castration" were developed, and increased to longevity of the t's life, wouldnt this do more harm than good? instead of people sending males out to breed they would just keep them, removing a large amount of potential captive borns from the future market.:?
Whoah, that's some pretty... sick stuff...Originally posted by Wade
IOffspring-to-mother inbreeding seems like it would be fairly common, however.