Raising L. geometricus

Pulk

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I brought a black widow inside a few days ago; it did its thing and started building its web in a place inconvenient for me (the top of the container, away for all the perfectly-placed sticks.) Anyway, I gently knocked it down this morning to where I want it, and in like fifteen minutes it laid? built? its eggsac down there. It's improving it right now.
I've never raised slings of any species of anything whatsoever, so can anyone tell me exactly how its done, or email me about it, or point me to a place that gives instructions?
thanks
 
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cacoseraph

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the babies are hideously small. give insanely careful consideration to how you are going to contain them as they will just breeze through most vent holes. trust me on that =P
 

P. Novak

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Oh yeah these thing are very small. I had a whole sac escape in my room once =/. I caught most of them back, killed the rest:embarrassed: , and then some are still out there. They don't possess the venom yet(or so I heard, caco can you varify), so don't worry about handling the slings. If I were you I would remove the sac when it starts looking darker because that means they are already 1st instar atleast and will hatch out soon. You don't want them to hatch with the mom because it's a pain in the a** getting them out while watching out for the mom, or vice versa, trying to get the mom out while not allowing all the slings to escape. With that all said, this species is incredibly hardy so you won't have to worry about care so much.

Oh and this won't be your last sac from this female; if it is infact fertile then she will keep laying till she dies.
 

TNeal

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Are the slings cannabilistic? When should they be seperated into individual homes?

Tom
 

P. Novak

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Are the slings cannabilistic? When should they be seperated into individual homes?

Tom
L.hesperus usually have ALOT of slings, so I would let them cannabilse for awhile till your down to like 100 or more if you want. THis way only the strongest survive and you have a healthy line of widows.

If you want ALL of them, seperate them as soon as you see cannabilism; IME i've seen it a couple days after hatching out of the sac.
 

cacoseraph

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Oh yeah these thing are very small. I had a whole sac escape in my room once =/. I caught most of them back, killed the rest:embarrassed: , and then some are still out there. They don't possess the venom yet(or so I heard, caco can you varify), so don't worry about handling the slings. If I were you I would remove the sac when it starts looking darker because that means they are already 1st instar atleast and will hatch out soon. You don't want them to hatch with the mom because it's a pain in the a** getting them out while watching out for the mom, or vice versa, trying to get the mom out while not allowing all the slings to escape. With that all said, this species is incredibly hardy so you won't have to worry about care so much.

Oh and this won't be your last sac from this female; if it is infact fertile then she will keep laying till she dies.
i believe the babies do have venom but literally can not bite though the dead layers of surface skin to get the macromolecule or two into your living systems.

and i definitely would not let the eggsac hatch with mom. you would have to restrict her cage down to no ventilation or install microscreen or something

Are the slings cannabilistic? When should they be seperated into individual homes?

Tom
see novak's answer. and on top of making a lot of slings per eggsac they almost always make more than one viable eggsac. i had one make 13 sacs in my care... the first half were all >=100 slings (the first couple few sacs had well over 200 per), and only the last three didn't seem to have any viables and looked kind of crappy and small. so... figure somewhat conservatively you have a playing field of potentially about 1000 spiderlings to work with.
 

Pulk

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Now I'm not sure it's a hesperus, because of it silver pattern on the back and the spiky egg sac (also maybe balling behavior and/or still having stripéd legs?) Although it does have a very red hourglass.

Anyway, how long, roughly, will it be until the sac turns dark? Because I'm not sure I'll notice the difference... maybe I should take it early?
 

Widowman10

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i believe the babies do have venom but literally can not bite though the dead layers of surface skin to get the macromolecule or two into your living systems.
even if their fangs could penetrate through the skin, it still wouldn't matter. males, juvies, slings, everything except an almost mature female, etc doesn't matter. none of the above can hurt you except the real deal. so no worries :D
 

buthus

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Now I'm not sure it's a hesperus, because of it silver pattern on the back and the spiky egg sac (also maybe balling behavior and/or still having stripéd legs?) Although it does have a very red hourglass.

Anyway, how long, roughly, will it be until the sac turns dark? Because I'm not sure I'll notice the difference... maybe I should take it early?
Show us your widow and the sac. Even if its a cell phone pic. Sounds like you found a geometricus and if that is the case and you collected it in San Diego, it would be important info for those who are interested in the ever expanding geo range. ;)
 

Pulk

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It is basically all black; it looks a lot more like L. hesperus than the internet's pictures of L. geometricus. (and it's not large, so the striping isn't -that- unusual.)

How long, roughly, will it be until the sac turns dark? Because I'm not sure I'll notice the difference... maybe I should take it early?
 

cacoseraph

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even if their fangs could penetrate through the skin, it still wouldn't matter. males, juvies, slings, everything except an almost mature female, etc doesn't matter. none of the above can hurt you except the real deal. so no worries :D
yeah.... even though i free handle all stages i still wouldn't want to rely on that. i have read a fair amount about widows and i do not believe i have ever ever had the "only mature females are dangerous" substantiated. i've seen juvs take down pretty massive prey... which means they have some kind of venom... does the venom composition change on maturity? i have never read that. obviously me not knowing something doesn't mean a whole lot.... but i do think i would have read and remembered that and been WAY sillier with my widow antics. heh.


edit:
just caught the spiky eggsac thing. sounds like brown widow or something else. a hesperus would literally have to be brain damaged to me a geometricus sac. cool if true... sort of. i have been looking for geo's since i heard of them, but never found in So Cal wild
 
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Widowman10

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yeah.... even though i free handle all stages i still wouldn't want to rely on that. i have read a fair amount about widows and i do not believe i have ever ever had the "only mature females are dangerous" substantiated. i've seen juvs take down pretty massive prey... which means they have some kind of venom... does the venom composition change on maturity? i have never read that. obviously me not knowing something doesn't mean a whole lot.... but i do think i would have read and remembered that and been WAY sillier with my widow antics. heh.
haha, i wouldn't totally rely on that either;) but it does make sense. the juvies (that is, before reaching adulthood) wouldn't have as bad of venom. true, they can take down some awesome prey, but so can a lot of other spiders with "weak" venom. i'm just sayin, as soon as you see one start the maturing process, and it's a female, you'd better watch out ;)
 

buthus

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It is basically all black; it looks a lot more like L. hesperus than the internet's pictures of L. geometricus. (and it's not large, so the striping isn't -that- unusual.)
So you're saying you found webbing that seems to be a Latro web.. and in it there was a sub-adult (probably hesperus) and an eggsac that had "spikes". ??

Any chance to you revisiting the find?
 

Pulk

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First, I still really really need to get a rough idea of how long I should wait to remove the sac (or how to tell when it's ready).

I don't see any reason to assume this specimen is from around here... any potted plants, or outdoor tools, etc. (or grapes?) could have brought it over from somewhere else.
The web it was on is -right- outside a glass door on my house. The interesting thing is that there were two females on it. The other one, still outside, has a tube/web/home in the door track nearby with an egg sac in it. (do they remain intact after hatching?)

I'll be able to get a crappy underside pic when I get a camera battery, but don't count on a dorsal view.
 

Venom

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Pulk, I think we need to verify what spider species you have, before we go on to specific advice. Latrodectus hesperus eggsacs should not have spikes. Could you provide a picture please--of both spider and sac, if possible? This would help tremendously! Thank you.
 
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Pulk

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buthus

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That would definitely seem to point us in the L. geometricus direction.

...I has a camera battery!

These pictures show the widow like I haven't seen it before... and I guess it isn't really all that black. I was also wrong in that these pictures aren't -that- crappy.

Spider:
flash, flash, flash
no flash, no flash

Sac:
flash, flash, flash
no flash, no flash
Either you have a L.rhodesiensis that has kidnapped a L.elegans eggsac for her own :? :D ...OR you have yourself a geo! :clap: A truely rare find in CA. ...though probably/maybe not so rare anymore.
 

Python

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I don't know if all widows are the same but I raise mactans a lot and I usually take the female of the web and leave the sac in the web. I usually do this a few days after seh lays it. I have had one lay eggs every two weeks for over a year. That was a female that I raised from the sac so I know when she was bred and I know that she had her first and last sac in my care. She lived for almost three years and only died about 6 months ago. But again, that was mactans and I don't know how they relate to geometricus. Don't know how much help I could offer, but good luck and great find!
 

cacoseraph

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First, I still really really need to get a rough idea of how long I should wait to remove the sac (or how to tell when it's ready).

I don't see any reason to assume this specimen is from around here... any potted plants, or outdoor tools, etc. (or grapes?) could have brought it over from somewhere else.
The web it was on is -right- outside a glass door on my house. The interesting thing is that there were two females on it. The other one, still outside, has a tube/web/home in the door track nearby with an egg sac in it. (do they remain intact after hatching?)

I'll be able to get a crappy underside pic when I get a camera battery, but don't count on a dorsal view.

hmm... i can't recall real accurately but it is something like 20-50 days from sac laid to pop. shorter in higher temps and longer in lower temps. as it is summer i expect it to be on the shorter end. you might want to start your serious preperations

congrats on the geo. very cool find :D
 

Pulk

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Because she laid the sac only a few days after I took her inside, the web is not very dense/extensive at all. Also there's bark chips on the bottom of the container, which look very easy to lose a tiny sling in. So I'd prefer to remove the sac and leave the female in there.

I need to know when I should move it (as late as possible but before they hatch of course). What kind of container/setup should I move it to? What materials/containers/food do I need to prepare for the babies? (And when?)

If anyone has a link to a care sheet, or a thread with info like this, that would also be great. Again, I've never raised anything from eggs.
 
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