Orkin Pest Control - Tarantulas


Old Timer
Aug 30, 2009
Well what do you know.. Was browsing around the web for tarantulas as always and came across the Orkin pest control site which had a FAQ about tarantulas.

I was ready to read and giggle at the apparent lack of information but was really surprised it's pretty ~spot~ on and is done very, very well. Was thankful that in a sea of bad info, rumors and other bad press against tarantulas they really present it well. Thought I would share so others can see that not all sources out there for the John Q Public types are bad.

Well done Orkin, well done!


Here's a portion on their site regarding Tarantula Molting
Tarantula Molting

Molting is a natural process whereby a new exoskeleton is produced and the old one is shed. Tarantulas undergo a series of such molts at various developmental stages. The molting process allows them to adapt to their growing bodies while remaining protected by the exoskeleton. Molting also regenerates missing appendages; after a succession of molts, these appendages may reach their original proportions.

Prior to molting, tarantulas often fast for a number of days and appear sluggish and restless. During this time, tarantulas spin molting mats from silk. These arachnids must split themselves open in order to free themselves from their old exoskeletons. However, before molting begins, a new exoskeleton has already formed inside the old one. This new exoskeleton is soft and flexible, but will solidify after the old one is shed.

After molting, tarantulas fast again, as they must wait for their new fangs and exoskeletons to harden before they are able to feed. Molting can pose danger to tarantulas. In extremely dry conditions, the old exoskeleton may not soften enough to be removed. Molting periods also render tarantulas more vulnerable to predators.

Tarantula spiderlings may molt as often as once each month, while half-grown specimens molt approximately two to three times per year. Time intervals between molts increase as tarantulas near maturity.


Aug 26, 2011
I wanted to post my hilarious finding (was trying to find good taxonomy info), and ran a search on the forum before posting in case anyone already noticed the Orkin goof. Seems either they added a new part since you saw this, or you missed the funny part. They have that great mini-article you posted, but then if you click "tarantula baby" they contradict themselves and spew nonsense. I about peed my pants laughing so hard.

from http://www.orkin.com/other/spiders/tarantula-baby : "After their first molt, immature tarantulas venture out on their own. They molt about once per year and become mature in five to seven years."

Had these statements been arranged a bit differently I would give them more credit, but come on now? A. Hatch, B. Molt once a year, C. Mature in 5-7 years?

Josh Perry

Jun 15, 2011
i once found an orkin thing about how to get rid of the very dangerous and arboreal OBT who knew they lived in palm trees in Florida :sarcasm:


Mar 5, 2011
Being a former exterminator myself, my experiance has been that some of the companies are even more uninformed than some of their customers. As I have found that some of the BS information and lies that I had to tell customers so the company could make a quick buck was just rediculous. For example one of these situations involved Dolomedes tenebrosus (local fishing spider) and I was forced by management to tell this couple that they were going to invade their home and that any bite from one of these spiders could kill them (even though I have been bitten by them a couple of times). I must admit that I am impressed by orkins article though as it doesnt try to mislead anyone for a quick buck.


Nov 19, 2010
i once found an orkin thing about how to get rid of the very dangerous and arboreal OBT who knew they lived in palm trees in Florida :sarcasm:
Who knew they were arboreal. kinda wondering what it wrong with mine dogging all these damned holes. Hm its a question only orkin can amswer.