Sperm Webs, Final Molts, etc

kellygirl

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i have a few questions which may seem ignorant but i must ask...

1. what is the significance of a sperm web? how is it different from other webbing?

2. how do you know if it is your T's "final molt"?

3. how exactly do Ts go about mating? it sounds like a complicated process with all those legs!

4. how soon can you tell the sex of a T?

5. what is the best setup for a pair of mating Ts? and then what is the best setup for a gravid (sp?) female. from reading the posts, i assume gravid means pregnant. please correct me if i'm wrong!

alright.....that's enough questions for now. although more will be sure to follow down the road. thanks for your patience with me everyone!

kellygirl
 

Immortal_sin

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Originally posted by kellygirl
i have a few questions which may seem ignorant but i must ask...

1. what is the significance of a sperm web? how is it different from other webbing?

a male builds a sperm web to hold the sperm that he deposits with his epiandrous glands (near his midsection)
He deposits the sperm on the sperm web, then 'dips' his palps in to load.

2. how do you know if it is your T's "final molt"?

you don't...if it's a female. At least as far as I know. Females continue molting after sexual maturity.
Males OTOH, will develop the structures on their palps, and tibial hooks (if that particular species have them)

3. how exactly do Ts go about mating? it sounds like a
complicated process with all those legs!

hmmm, well, it's hard to see even watching them, but basically, the male uses his front pair of legs with the hooks on them to hold the female's fangs, it's how he braces her up. He then takes his palps and inserts them into her epigastric furrow. He does this one at a time...then ....he runs away REALLY fast LOL

4. how soon can you tell the sex of a T?

depends on whether you have a microscope or not.
I'd say 3.5-3" or so with the naked eye (my best guess)

5. what is the best setup for a pair of mating Ts? and then what is the best setup for a gravid (sp?) female. from reading the posts, i assume gravid means pregnant. please correct me if i'm wrong!

hmmm, well, the way I do it is to have the female's container inside a larger container containing the male. Then, I open both lids, and let the male 'find' her. He will usually climb into her container, mate, then run like hell.
I will let someone else talk about the gravid female setup. Mine was NOT conducive to ease of separating hundreds of babies!

alright.....that's enough questions for now. although more will be sure to follow down the road. thanks for your patience with me everyone!

kellygirl
 

MrT

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Kellygirl, I'll answer #2 first: You can tell the final molt on a male T by the mating hooks on its front two legs, on the tibia segment. Thats the easy way to tell. #1: you will also know its a boy if it builds a sperm web. He'll spin it in most cases from the cage wall to the floor, on a angle, if its a terrestrial species. Leaving enough room so it can crawl under the web , get on its back and deposit a drop of sperm on the underside of the web. It'll then get back on top of the web and reach under it with its padipalps and load his guns. When he's loaded his pedipalps, he'll destroy the web.
I'm going to let someone else answer 3-4-5, cause I'm about the slowest typer around. And by the time I'm done, your questions will have been answered three times.

Ernie;)
 

MrT

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What did I tell ya? ssslllooowww typer. And Immortal_sin, she's a quick one.:) :) :)
 

kellygirl

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another ?

ok, so after the male T "dips" in the sperm web, how long does he have before he needs to mate? i assume he can mate right away... once he has mated with one female, does he need to "re-dip" or does he have enough for another go round? how many sperm webs will he build if he is going to mate more than once? does he usually build the web even if there is no female around?

sorry for all the questions.....

kellygirl
 

Immortal_sin

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Kellygirl...I'm a quick one all right ;)
Typer, that is....
I am not sure about the last question you have, but here is how I understand it. I'm sure someone will correct me if I am wrong:
The male builds a sperm web, and he loads his palps. Now, he's ready to go. AFAIK, he ALWAYS builds one, female or no female around.
He needs to re-load before mating again, or he's shooting blanks (pardon the expression)
As far as never mating, I had a C brachycephalus male that I JUST sent out on a breeding loan. He matured in Feb. He must have made hundreds (well, that's probably exaggerating) of them, and he never mated. So I think they must keep on making them, even if there are no females around. Someone help me out here...is that right?!
 

kosh

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this is interesting.........how often will the male build another sperm web??
my G. rosea had his ultimate moult back at the beginning of june and i havent seen a sperm web yet........(im sure if he did it i just missed it):? :confused: :? :confused:
 

kosh

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anyone got an answer to my question???
as many people as are on the board tonight you'd think someone would know!!!
 

Botar

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Sorry Kosh

Kosh,

I'm with you and waiting for an answer as well. I had the same experience with my G. rosea that I sent to Galeogirl. I never saw a sperm web, but he could have easily made one and destroyed it without me knowing. I check on my T's daily, but they can go for 12 hours or more unobserved.

Botar
 

JacenBeers

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How do i know of my G Rosea is an asult or not? i know there are way to look at moults and ways to flip them over and look but i cant do this. Can I tell by size?
 

Botar

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Jacen,

The male is mature when you notice the bulbous pedipalps and the tibial spurs. As for the female, from what I understand it is more of a guess due to size. There may be some way to determine sexual maturity from the exuvium, but I have no experience with that.

Botar
 

MrT

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I've seen three T's make sperm webs, but only one each. The whole process took an hour at most. The loading took the longest, he kept dipping till the sperm was gone.
You would think when he unloads his guns, he'd have to re-load before mating again. I guess you just have to be lucky to see it happen.The right place at the right time. Schultz talks about it in his book.

Ernie
 

MrDeranged

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Once they unload, they do have to reload before they would be able to inseminate a female. From what I've heard, I believe that they make a sperm web about once a week. I've only ever seen one of my males actually make a sperm web. Generally, they will do it at night and all remnants will be gone by morning. Unless you're an insomniac, there is a great chance that you will never see your T making a sperm web. I've had quite a few mature males at this time and I'm sure that they've all made sperm webs, yet as I said, I've only seen it the one time. Wish I had taken pictures.... :(

Scott
 

Wade

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I've often wondered if exposure to a female will stimulate the making of a sperm web. I've had males mature who I never saw a sign of them making one, but I just assumed they did. After the first attempted breeding, however, they would always make one soon after being returned to their own cage.

Wade
 

MrT

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Tarantula keepers guide,
See page 80. Loading His Guns:)

Ernie
 
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