Newbie considers her options about first T

sori-tan

Arachnopeon
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Jan 31, 2007
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Hello. I hesitated posting, I know you get n00b threads all the time, but figured I can't lurk all the time (you might delete me :eek: )

I don't own a T, but I'm doing research into possibly owning one. I've begun narrowing down my choices and have been trying to get more info about basic husbandry and all that good stuff, but seeing as how I'm a n00b, I am not sure I'm covering all my bases.

Type of owner I am: I am a researchy type, so whatever type of T I wind up owning I'll probably study for a long while before I even buy it. I am sometimes unable to take care of my pets for short periods of time (personal reasons), so they have to be able to withstand occasional 'neglect'. I really like my setups to be totally complete as well as attractive and suitable for its contents. I refuse to become a collector of Ts, I am unable to sustain a colony of them and I lack the room because I collect other things.

Type of T I am considering: New World, Terrestrial (?). Specific species include Grammostola Rosea, Brachypelma vagans, Brachypelma smithi, and Brachypelma albopilosum.


I actually want a 'pet rock'. *laugh* I don't want a T that is too active, mostly because I find their stillness fascinating and I'm still at a stage where I find a really active, huge spider a bit alarming. Ts appeal to me precisely because they are low maitanence relative to other pets I've cared for in the past.

I have several sizes of setups available, from tiny kk-style 'tanks' (about 4x6) to 10g aquariums. I have many coconut shell caves, bogwood bits, plastic reptile caves, broken terra cotta pots, fake plants, and those shallow rocks they sell at the pet store to hold water. I'm probably going to invest in coir, or coir based substrate.

I'm not sure what age T I should get, although I think I read somewhere that most of the Ts I am considering should probably be 2" or larger. I'm also unsure of where to buy my possible-future T. My local pet store, I have only one, carries only 3 species of T at a time, 2 of them being on my list - rosie and curly. Their rosie seems to be a 2", so it's a bit appealing to just go ahead and get her straight from the shop, rather than from a breeder/distributor online.

Is there anything I'm failing to consider?

If you read that whole thing, I owe you an e-cookie.
 

cacoseraph

ArachnoGod
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where's my cookie? =P


reading into your post it sounds like you are probably not going to be free-handling your spider?

if that is the case then you probably don't need to worry that the smithi can fling "hairs" that quite a few people are discomforted by.

all four of those are going to be pretty docile and pet-rocky... though all will burrow if you give them the chance and the right cage set up.

since you are interested in having a nice cage too, i would pre-emptively caution you away from including a lot of plants that need height, as all of these taras are ground/burrow living and quite heavy bodied and can be injured in a fall. ...though, truth be told, if you only have one spider it doesn't seem like it is *that* likely that it will manage to injure itself

other than that, if cost is a concern the smithi is considerably more expensive than the other species.

edit:

also, all of those species can go quite a long time between care... even at small sizes. i have G. rosea i bred myself that have only fed twice in their first six months and are doing fine :)
 

Cirith Ungol

Ministry of Fluffy Bunnies
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Interesting viewpoint. (I mean sori-tan, "Jesus" just hit the submit button a little earlier than I ;) )

Ok, this is what I have to say about it: Constant occasional neglect is what's best for T's. They don't want or need to be taken care of like a gold hamster with daily care or stuff like that. Just toss in some food every now and then (ever 1-2 weeks) and the T is happy. Ofcourse, if feeding at the wrong time (depending on age regarding moult cycle) you should ofcourse skip any feeding attempts. But other than that the neglect part is actually something positive.

If you're not aiming for many T's I'd chose something a bit more colourful than a rosea. (Though whatever you're saying now, whatever you collect at the moment will get tossed out the window eventually to make room for more T's {D ). I can say that vagans is an extremely nice spider. It's relatively docile, very beautiful with it's jet black body and bright red abdomen and it's somewhere in between a lazy digger and a ground dweller. So you might easily get some different behaviour out of it once you're tired seeing it just sit there - because it does that a lot also.

10g is way big. Just pick something about 3-4 times the T's adult legspan and it's gonna be in the perfectly sized tank. Don't use too high tanks (or too low substrate depth). Falls can easily injure these delicate animals. Whatever you mentioned for hides and water sounds fine.

Another T that's very intersting, eventhough it occasionally moves ;) is Chromatopelma cyaneopubescens. It's a heavy webber, eats like a tank, very colourful and only a little skittish.

What's an e-cookie? ;)
 

sori-tan

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where's my cookie? =P
:liar: They're in my other pants!

reading into your post it sounds like you are probably not going to be free-handling your spider?

if that is the case then you probably don't need to worry that the smithi can fling "hairs" that quite a few people are discomforted by.
This is true, I don't believe I'll be a handler. Not due to any squick, but mostly because it just doesn't interest me to. I do, however, want a T that I may handle in case of an emergency, so that I don't need to instantly ninjafy myself to handle safely.

all four of those are going to be pretty docile and pet-rocky... though all will burrow if you give them the chance and the right cage set up.

since you are interested in having a nice cage too, i would pre-emptively caution you away from including a lot of plants that need height, as all of these taras are ground/burrow living and quite heavy bodied and can be injured in a fall. ...though, truth be told, if you only have one spider it doesn't seem like it is *that* likely that it will manage to injure itself

other than that, if cost is a concern the smithi is considerably more expensive than the other species.
*nods* I'm not terribly concerned about cost, although my general price range would probably be up to about $100 with shipping included. I own all the supplies, more or less, I just need to buy substrate, food, and T.


*ETA: Oops, Cirith_Ungol, you hit reply as I hit reply, so I'll get you in my next post. *laugh*
 

Mina

Arachnoking
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I have all of the T's you mentioned and I would urge you to go with the B. albopilosum or the G. rosea. The albos have a better temperment in general than I think the rosies do. I have 6 rosies, and every one of them is different, and I have two albos and they are both angels. None of my rosies is handeable, while both of the albos are.
Albos are more active, it is very entertaining to watch them bulldoze and move their substrate all around. I watch my younger one for hours when I can't sleep.
My B. vagans is a spaz. Another really good one to look into for a first timer is a G. aureostriata. They are pretty, get big, and calm. They do grow slow however.
I can't say anything about smithis, I can't keep them alive. I have heard that they are more likely to be hair flickers though.
 

green_bottle_04

Arachnobaron
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sounds like the smithi would be a good choice. but id also recommend a Green Bottle Blue ( c. cyaneopubescens) beautiful, hardy spiders.
 

elyanalyous

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why exactly do you not want an arboreal? there are some really good docile ones... and they make cool pets too. just look into a Avicularia avicularia. Out of your list i'd pick the smithi or the rosea. I love rosea, they can have a great range of personalities. you may want to look into a Lasiodora parahybana as well.

You sound like a great pet owner, and that you are willing to give the T the care it needs. and there is nothing bad about posting here eather. there is a great and diverse online comunity, and n00bs soon learn and then they are replaced by other n00bs, and the original n00bs can actually answer the questions.
 

Cirith Ungol

Ministry of Fluffy Bunnies
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You sound like a great pet owner, and that you are willing to give the T the care it needs. and there is nothing bad about posting here eather. there is a great and diverse online comunity, and n00bs soon learn and then they are replaced by other n00bs, and the original n00bs can actually answer the questions.
Well put!
................................................
 

elyanalyous

Arachnobaron
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hey i understand the hesitant questions posted here is all... after all there was a time when i was a n00b as well:eek: ;) :p :rolleyes:
 

phil jones

Arachnoprince
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hi i would recommend ( 1 ) b - albopilosum or ( 2 ) b - smithi if you want to go for a big one how about ( 1 ) L - parahybana or ( 2 ) a - geniculata and if arboreal then a - avicularia - good luck with any one you get -- phil
 

sori-tan

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Jan 31, 2007
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Constant occasional neglect is what's best for T's....If you're not aiming for many T's I'd chose something a bit more colourful than a rosea.....I can say that vagans is an extremely nice spider. It's relatively docile, very beautiful with it's jet black body and bright red abdomen and it's somewhere in between a lazy digger and a ground dweller. So you might easily get some different behaviour out of it once you're tired seeing it just sit there - because it does that a lot also....What's an e-cookie? ;)
I love that about Ts. *grins* Their entire existance seems so well suited for my 'way of life', which is why I've focused so much attention on them lately. Vagans is my visual favorite, of the Ts I currently have listed. *nods* Really, the first T to make me blink and 'ooOoo'.

An e-cookie, if you're not being facetious, is just a gesture of gratitude, saying I'm going to do something for you online but actually being physically unable to do it. Like writing *round of applause*, etc.

I have all of the T's you mentioned and I would urge you to go with the B. albopilosum or the G. rosea. The albos have a better temperment in general than I think the rosies do. I have 6 rosies, and every one of them is different, and I have two albos and they are both angels. None of my rosies is handeable, while both of the albos are.
Albos are more active, it is very entertaining to watch them bulldoze and move their substrate all around. I watch my younger one for hours when I can't sleep.
My B. vagans is a spaz. Another really good one to look into for a first timer is a G. aureostriata. They are pretty, get big, and calm. They do grow slow however.
I can't say anything about smithis, I can't keep them alive. I have heard that they are more likely to be hair flickers though.
sounds like the smithi would be a good choice. but id also recommend a Green Bottle Blue ( c. cyaneopubescens) beautiful, hardy spiders.
Thank you both for your recommendations and input, I'll give the Ts you mentioned a good lookover while I'm doing my reading.

why exactly do you not want an arboreal? there are some really good docile ones... and they make cool pets too. just look into a Avicularia avicularia. Out of your list i'd pick the smithi or the rosea. I love rosea, they can have a great range of personalities. you may want to look into a Lasiodora parahybana as well.
From what little I've read in the past, terrestrials seem to have a tempermen better suited to me in general, and fit the profile I've constructed for myself. They also seem to be better suited to the dwellings I have lying around. If there are Ts that fit my requirements who are also arboreal, I'd definately consider them. I've not completely overlooked the arboreal Ts, and Avicularia avicularia numbers among the ones I've looked into. I saw the word 'skittish' used to describe them once too often, so I chickened out of 'em and knocked them of my list.

You sound like a great pet owner, and that you are willing to give the T the care it needs. and there is nothing bad about posting here eather. there is a great and diverse online comunity, and n00bs soon learn and then they are replaced by other n00bs, and the original n00bs can actually answer the questions.
lol, thank you. I do try and be a good pet owner. I think that research is the foundation of ownership. I beleive firmly in knowing before buying, and being prepared before owning. I don't think I always make it, but damn I give it a helluva try.



Since no one addressed my comments concerning the age of the T, and where I ought to buy a T (petstore or online breeder/distributor), I'm guessing it's safe to assume I'm on the right track?
 

Vys

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Well, anything you got would be a pet rock, unless you're currently keeping a pair of twigs in a decorated old aquarium. That said, I would have to caution against a G. rosea. They seem really relatively really good at sitting still.

Arboreals would be a tad trickier, and what I'd suggest is something that eats alot. That's interesting. A food-refusing rock is perhaps not(according to Vys, anyway).

My vote goes to A. geniculata(New World, terrestrial!) or B. vagans.

As for sex/age. Well, It's fun to watch big slings / juveniles grow, but as a first-time keeper it would perhaps not be so fun to watch them grow into a spindly male who wanted nothing to do with you or your food and everything to do with female spiders. Female sub-adults would be the most expensive kind, but also the best, I think.

*Regarding Avics; I wouldn't really call them 'skittish', when compared to all other arboreals. More like dim-witted fuzzy poo-spiders.

Edit. And yes, it's nice to see this as opposed to the maybe a bit more common 'i jus got 'mexican monster taarrantela' n i kep it inna shobox and i was look and no found and how carr forit?'
 
Last edited:

elyanalyous

Arachnobaron
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my A.avic was't agressive or skittish at all. also I'd try to buy from an online dealer, because then you know you are getting a healthy animal, that is hopefully CB (captive bred) vs WC (wild caught). Petstores tend to have WC and some (aka most) petstores actually know nothing about keeping these animals healthy or happy.

also for size... if this is your first it may be better to try to find one that is ~2"... one of the hardest things for me is the thought of me squishing one of my slings accidentally when they are so small.

I'm sure you probly know what these terms mean but just incase:
CB tend to be healthyer.

WC you have no way of knowing if they are old or young, healthy or not, carrying a parasite or not ect. also stress can kill a T, and being ripped out of the wild and shoved in a tank is way too stressfull...ntm the added ecological strain of taking the animals out of the natural balance of the wild.
 

Bark

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Since no one addressed my comments concerning the age of the T, and where I ought to buy a T (petstore or online breeder/distributor), I'm guessing it's safe to assume I'm on the right track?
The way I see it, you have 2 choices.

1) Buy a guaranteed female tarantula. A B Smithi or B Vagans female can outlive a dog, so you will have a friend for quite awhile. This is going to cost a bit more of course. Males only live 2 years, it is a shame, but that is just the way it is. You will have to trust the seller as a tarantula's age isn't something you can tell by looking at it. You don't want a 15+ year old female.

2) Roll the dice and get a couple of slings (baby tarantulas). These are inexpensive, but you don't know for sure what sex you are going to get. You can get a few to increase the odds of getting a female (though that doesn't work well for me:( ). Also, the best part is you get to watch something grow from 1/4" to 5"-6" over time.
 

Mina

Arachnoking
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sounds like the smithi would be a good choice. but id also recommend a Green Bottle Blue ( c. cyaneopubescens) beautiful, hardy spiders.
I know you love Green bottles, quite frankly, so do I (by the way, I finally got another GBB sling, I've been without one since my male got munched) But don't you think a GBB is a little to fast for what she seems to want? GBB's are many things but a pet rock they ain't. My guy was super sweet and had a great temperment but he was skittish as all get out. Can't tell with the new little one yet, all it does it eat.

sori-tan, as far as age and where you should get it from, that is going to depend somewhat on your final choice of T. You also need to decide if wild caught is okay with you or not. Let us know when you decide then we can give you some shopping advice.
 

sori-tan

Arachnopeon
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Jan 31, 2007
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Well, as far as WC and CB goes, I definately favor CB Ts... for all the obvious reasons. I don't know why, but I was under the impression that Rosies were so common, because they were all CB. Huh...

Since I kinda feel like I'm months away from purchase, due to weather and etc, I'm being a bit lackadasical about my decision making. I feel free to browse, know what I mean?

... And yes, it's nice to see this as opposed to the maybe a bit more common 'i jus got 'mexican monster taarrantela' n i kep it inna shobox and i was look and no found and how carr forit?'
>< I know what you mean. I've been into fishkeeping before, and I very often would see posts where someone impulse purchased a fish, didn't know what it was, didn't know how to care for it, kept it in an improper enviroment, and then wondered why it died. *shudder* I can understand newbie mistakes, I know I make them all the time (and often when I'm not even a n00b at something anymore), but jeeez. /vent
 
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