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P. metallica price

Discussion in 'Tarantula Chat' started by Fierce Deity, Mar 5, 2006.

  1. Swifty

    Swifty Arachnobaron Old Timer

    I disagree. I could list many species 5 yrs ago, includeing X. immanis that are still very hard to get. Be careful not to be over confident that these species are going to be everywhere for cheap prices. I understand your theory, but I doubt it will happen.
    People understand, you can compare these to apples and oranges, but you don't just go pluck them from a tree when you want one. Just because there is a desire, doesn't mean it will happen.

    I believe they will drop, but the demand grows everyday as new hobbyists enter. Just because two eggsacs have been produced in this country doesn't make them easy to produce. Thats not enough to know how easy to breed this species is. How many have been produced in Europe? Not many. If there is a lull in production, let's say for a couple years, then what?

    For example, in '04 I produced the first cb B. ruhnaui, but only 6 survived. At this time a huge amount of spiderlings from Europe had come in making the price much cheaper for B. ruhnaui. Since then very few have entered the states. I've been raising two males that I got in '02 to breed again. They matured and I bred them and got another sac. I pulled the sac at 35 days to find it was all dry mold, despite the conditions being checked regularly.

    So what just happened? Well, the price for B. ruhnaui just went up. The reason is even though the demand is no where near P. metallica, they don't come easy.
    Michael has a P. subfusca eggsac right now, does this have an effect on the P. subfusca market? In reality no. Because these are not apples and oranges, and are damn hard to produce.

    The reason P. metallica, X. immanis, and P. subfusca are going to stay around at relatively high prices is because the size of clutch, the uncertainty of breeding them, will be over shadowed by the demand.

    Personally I think they will go down in price, but at what "bottoming out" price overall, nobody knows.
  2. Michael Jacobi

    Michael Jacobi RETIRED/RARELY USE AB Arachnosupporter

    Kelly's post explains the economics of our hobby quite well. It is ludicrous to "guarantee" what future prices will be. The Xenesthis immanis example illustrates this. For an animal species to "saturate the market" it needs to be readily available, moderately priced, and easily reproduceable. To assume that P. metallica or any other tarantula species is those things is ignorant. Will P. metallica drop in price in the future? Most likely. Will it happen quickly? Probably not. Will the demand decrease? Not any time soon. Will people with no first-hand knowledge continue to post rubbish? Definitely.

    The thesis of Swifty's post is that there are species that may always be in short supply due to a number of factors. Having bred both reptiles and tarantulas for many years I can tell you that tarantulas are not as easy to breed. Not easy at all, in fact. There is much more uncertainty. We don't have a formula for success. I can give a person a pair of Burmese pythons, one page of instructions for husbandry and propagation, and if they follow the instructions exactly they more often than not will be able to produce offspring two years later. (Even easier and less expensive to feed would be leopard geckos, crested geckos, bearded dragons, but I am using the Burmese python example for a reason). I bought albino Burmese the first year they were available for $3500 each. The next year I paid $1200-1500. When I bred them I sold them for $500 and eventually you could find them at shows for $80. Since then the price has risen back up to $150 or so. This is an example of a saturated market that eventually became less saturated. Burmese pythons are easy to breed and prolific! So why did the price go back up? Because the hobby grew to where the demand increased again. Because breeders who did not want to take up cage space and pay the rabbit bill for a devalued species quit working with them. Now, breeders can take an albino ball python that can be housed in a sweater box instead of a extra large cage and produces 6-9 eggs instead of 40-70 and make much more money. Although the price of an albino ball python has dropped, the market has not become saturated and the "average hobbyist" cannot afford them. It may be a decade before they can. Enough of the herp example - snakes are much easier to breed than tarantulas!

    Back to the wonderful world of tarantulas... there a number of species that are very prolific and the supply often exceeds the demand (e.g., Lasiodora parahybana, Acanthoscurria geniculata). However, Poecilotheria species do not have 500-2000+ eggs per sac; they have 30-100. Mated females often molt instead of producing a sac, or eat/destroy their sacs. As Swifty pointed out, the small number of P. metallica sacs produced to date does not prove that they will become as plentiful as P. regalis. It is quite possible that they will, but... :?

    So, what happens when more sacs are produced in the US? Will the price go down? Yes. Will it happen quickly? Hopefully not ;P What you have to remember is that as the price decreases the demand will increase. Hobbyists are not simply divided into those will very little money to spend on spiders and those who can afford the high-end species. The people somewhere in the middle will be able to afford them before those who have less money to spend on a luxury item. The demand will increase as they become more affordable and it will delay a further decrease in price. And, of course, this assumes that more sacs are produced ON A REGULAR BASIS. If none are produced for one single year the price and demand will shoot right back up. If they prove to be as difficult to breed as X. immanis, P. subfusca, M. mesomelas, etc., the price will not decrease significantly any time soon. And Poecilotheria metallica has other things going for it: its coloration is incredible and almost unequalled among theraphosid spiders, it is a Poecilotheria and that makes it popular in general, they are hardy and fairly calm and may be suitable for first-time Poec owners (although not for beginners). These factors add to their demand and affect their price as well.

    Ahhh, the beauty... (and until you see an adult female in person in natural light you haven't really seen one)


    Cheers, Michael
  3. Michael Jacobi

    Michael Jacobi RETIRED/RARELY USE AB Arachnosupporter

    There has never been a shipment of wild-caught P. metallica. The imports mentioned were captive offspring produced by a well-known Danish breeder. Other than those bred by Kelly Swift and those currently for sale by Todd Gearheart (sorry, I don't recall the name of the person who actually bred them), all of the P. metallica in the US came from one source. Most were imported by one individual on several different occasions, and another small group were imported after the Hamm/Germany show by three individuals, but came from the same Danish breeder. The founding stock for the Danish breeder and for several other parties in Europe who have bred the species were collected in India and brought back personally. I should also mention that a number of females were collected so there is genetic variation among the spiders in the US hobby.

    Cheers, Michael
  4. xgrafcorex

    xgrafcorex Thread Killer Old Timer

    is it just me, or is anyone else's wallet starting to itch? :D
  5. angelarachnid

    angelarachnid Arachnobaron Old Timer


    look like i unintentionally upset a couple of people. (you will know when i intentionally try to upset people)

    Sorry for that.

  6. boidaddic

    boidaddic Arachnosquire Old Timer

    I totally agree with the prices their at now, me as a small distributor I know that theirs alot of work in keeping all these animals and sometimes the profit made hardly seems worth all the effort, stress and time put into them. I dont even know how many times i've heard people whining about the profits that distributors make, but once you factor in caging, feeding, electricity etc, etc, etc, its really not that much made. Unfortunately I do see metallica prices dropping fairly quickly in the near future as they have dropped fairly significantly in the last couple months. Just my .02

    Eric Weintraub
  7. MizM

    MizM Arachnoprincess Old Timer

    Well, THIS hobbyist thinks that regardless of the price, she WILL get one.:eek: I might have to save for the purchase, but their beauty definitely makes them worth the money.
  8. Beardo

    Beardo Arachnoprince Old Timer

    Hey Michael, I'll trade you some potato wedges for one of your subfusca when they hatch out. I know, I know...my generosity is overwhelming. No need to thank me. :D
  9. MizM

    MizM Arachnoprincess Old Timer

    Oh geeze!:eek: Potato wedges? What's next? I can hear it now: "Who do I have to sleep with around here to get a P. metallica?!"{D
  10. Michael Jacobi

    Michael Jacobi RETIRED/RARELY USE AB Arachnosupporter

    @ Ray: No upset - and no apology necessary. I took your post as playfully commenting on the prices in the US, which may seem exorbitant to those who don't completely understand the significant differences between the European market and the American and the numerous factors that impact arachnid commerce in the US.

    @ Terri: We may be able to work something out ;)

    @ David: You want something wedged where?

    Cheers, Michael
  11. David Burns

    David Burns Arachnoprince Old Timer

    If this "infamous" danish breeder is reading this thread. I would like to thank him!! Not just for this specie, but for all the species he has produced at levels where he could export them to us.

    Maybe he could write a book on breeding.

    I think part of the problem of people not understanding the high prices of some species, is that people who have not tried breeding think that if you put a pair together you get a sac. Or, if you get a sac you get slings. This just isn't the case. :wall:
  12. Michael Jacobi

    Michael Jacobi RETIRED/RARELY USE AB Arachnosupporter

    Actually, Henrik Wessel Frank is a member of Arachnoboards (Hendriks) and, according to his user profile, was on the site today.

    Cheers, Michael
  13. Nich

    Nich Curator of glass boxes Arachnosupporter

    Wow, I was not aware of this. Im moving to somewhere near Shrilanka......:)
  14. Michael Jacobi

    Michael Jacobi RETIRED/RARELY USE AB Arachnosupporter

    If you are referring to my comment regarding breeders collecting their founder stock in the wild, I mentioned INDIA. It is my understanding, that SRI LANKA restricts or prohibits removal of its wildlife. Also, I would hardly say that Denmark and Germany are close to the Indian subcontinent; it's just easier and less expensive for Europeans to travel there than Americans.

    Cheers, Michael

    PS - Haplopelma is spelled incorrectly in your signature.
  15. Socrates

    Socrates Arachnoprince Old Timer

    :clap: :clap: :clap:

    I loved your entire post, Michael, but the above quote is "priceless". :)

  16. Brian S

    Brian S ArachnoGod Old Timer

    Oh Terri!!! You have reached an all time high at being low LMAO{D {D
  17. Nich

    Nich Curator of glass boxes Arachnosupporter

    :worship: ....jk about moving....but thanks for pointing that out.
  18. FOX

    FOX Arachnoknight Old Timer

    I nearllt purchased one of these last week, if its the same type, blue with little yellow bits on the legs, then we can get these in the uk for aprox £65, i think thats about $110.
    So the $500 seems a bit high but i guess that's the difference between country's.
  19. MRL

    MRL Arachnolord Old Timer

    It was mentioned earlier in the thread that they are about £90 in Europe.
  20. Crotalus

    Crotalus Arachnoking Old Timer

    I dont believe its because its easier or cheaper to go to India for europeans that Europe got the latest species first. Europe also got most of the South American species in first and its not cheaper or any easier to travel there - quite the opposite. Its just a matter of dedication and alot of smuggler tendencies.
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