T. stirmi died

Poec54

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Question - As I've said, the onset of the only symptom (not eating, completely normal pre-molt or in general) was sudden and death was almost immediately following, after normal behavior. For months, the T was fine. There was no fall, because the T was too big to get off the ground and climb smooth glass.

I can see old age being a gradual winding down. I can see bad temperature, bad humidity, being a gradual winding down. What I can't see are these two factors resulting in almost instant death out of nowhere.

With the shortcomings of the cage, a combination of factors may have pushed it over the edge. Because of a quick decline, a fall can't be ruled out, as it may have managed to get up higher one time; no one watches their spiders 24/7. It could have landed on a bad spot on the abdomen, and it wouldn't have to have been very high at all for that to have had complications. From the dozens of stirmi/blondi I've owned over the last 20 years, with moist substrate and a more closed lid, a healthy, feeding Theraphosa has never gone downhill that fast.
 

SC Tarantulas

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Sorry for your loss.
I've never observed and T drop dead in a matter of minutes due to lack of humidity (regardless of species) so Id say it was very likely something unrelated to humidity levels. As mentioned a fall or something to do with the abdomen abnormalities are far more likely culprits. Sadly it's difficult to determine one way or another. Touching on the "possible" humidity issues, I'm not a fan of an enclosure full of wet substrate personally. Especially if it's just coco fiber as it becomes quite acidic when it stays wet for extended periods of time. A far more ideal option IMO for species that require higher humidity (in addition to an acrylic lid rather than screen) is a false bottom enclosure with live plants. These keep exceptional humidity without creating a bacteria/fungus filled enclosure with terrible air quality. When done correctly, they are very low maintenance set. Most people would be shocked at how much the humidity level rises and maintains in a tank by doing nothing more than adding a few live plants.
 

Casey K

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Regarding my stirmi- I had my terrarium setup to where there was a cool mist humidifier hooked up to it. It also was a (hard large hole) screen/metal top. I had a hole in the top just big enough to fit a 1.5" diameter tube down in it near the water dish. The tube was hooked up to the cool mist humidifier. Since I had a screen top, I used a thick (large) dark colored towel (bath towel) that was folded up until it hung about 2" over the lid. This towel would help keep the humidity in. I never had to soak the substrate or overfill the water dish. She never had issues molting and was quite large (8+").....very healthy specimen. Hopefully this helps. If I get another stirmi I will definitely set her up the same way.
 

Ran

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Everyone who has posted in my mind has sound advice and ideas which mimic the stirmi's natural habitat...a moist tropical climate. 7 years ago I purchased a juvenile female (5.5") from a person I've known for quite awhile that owns a reptile store near me. She was with a batch of 8 others of which I helped sex out. She is now 10" her carapace measures 1.5" front to back and side to side. I watched in horror over 2 years as her batch mates slowly died because their humidity and temperature requirements were not met (bone dry with a dry water dish). Each one slowly removed every hair they had on their abdomens...they looked horrible. I told the owner and the person taking care of the T's every time I went in on how to properly care for them...they did not listen...the remaining stirmi passed. Reflecting on the abdomen hair I theorized it was caused by stress and to preserve what water they had in them as hairs do contain water albeit a small amount. I have successfully bred stirmi and blondi and they do require all the above posts husbandry requirements. I have had T's die for no apparent reason while others have passed from obvious signs...and others that miraculously recovered. Abdomens that show this type of blistering rarely pull through the next molt or do not make it to the molt. We as care takers of these wonderful creatures do our best for them but sometimes it's not enough as nature has its own agenda.
 

Poec54

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Abdomens that show this type of blistering rarely pull through the next molt or do not make it to the molt.

My one experience with a blister: I have a w/c adult female E murinus with a big blister on it's abdomen. I didn't expect it to last long. It's had 2 annual molts (one this month), and is eating well again. Obviously something's wrong internally, but it acts like everything's okay. I won't try breeding her, as that may push the blister to becoming something dangerous.
 

Venom1080

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Sorry for your loss.
I've never observed and T drop dead in a matter of minutes due to lack of humidity (regardless of species) so Id say it was very likely something unrelated to humidity levels. As mentioned a fall or something to do with the abdomen abnormalities are far more likely culprits. Sadly it's difficult to determine one way or another. Touching on the "possible" humidity issues, I'm not a fan of an enclosure full of wet substrate personally. Especially if it's just coco fiber as it becomes quite acidic when it stays wet for extended periods of time. A far more ideal option IMO for species that require higher humidity (in addition to an acrylic lid rather than screen) is a false bottom enclosure with live plants. These keep exceptional humidity without creating a bacteria/fungus filled enclosure with terrible air quality. When done correctly, they are very low maintenance set. Most people would be shocked at how much the humidity level rises and maintains in a tank by doing nothing more than adding a few live plants.
most consider live plants too much work to bother with. many people have raised theraphosa without live plants. i dont think its worth buying the plants and maintaining them.
 

Ran

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Poec54, I have had 2 T's with abdomen blisters, one a Pamphobeteus nigricolor and a genic....both passed. I have 2 sister regalis and one did not eat for one molt and then only ate once on the molt after and is now doing well....I thought surely she would not make it. One never knows with these things.
 

crlovel

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Poec54, I have had 2 T's with abdomen blisters, one a Pamphobeteus nigricolor and a genic....both passed. I have 2 sister regalis and one did not eat for one molt and then only ate once on the molt after and is now doing well....I thought surely she would not make it. One never knows with these things.
Mine had two large blisters on her abdomen and a bald patch surrounding them, there since purchase. From the time I brought her home, the bald patch did not grow.
 

Poec54

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I've never observed and T drop dead in a matter of minutes due to lack of humidity (regardless of species).

He didn't say that. It stopped feeding week prior, and before that was periodically standing over the water bowl. There were signs of a problem for a while and they gradually caught up with the spider. The cage was too dry, and it never could have survived in it over the winter, once artificial heat was on regularly. There's currently another thread about Theraphosa, and one of the moderators who had a lot of experience with them said that this genus requires moist substrate.
 

SC Tarantulas

Arachnoknight
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most consider live plants too much work to bother with. many people have raised theraphosa without live plants. i dont think its worth buying the plants and maintaining them.
To each their own. There is next to no maintenance when done properly.
 

SC Tarantulas

Arachnoknight
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He didn't say that. It stopped feeding week prior, and before that was periodically standing over the water bowl. There were signs of a problem for a while and they gradually caught up with the spider. The cage was too dry, and it never could have survived in it over the winter, once artificial heat was on regularly. There's currently another thread about Theraphosa, and one of the moderators who had a lot of experience with them said that this genus requires moist substrate.
Agree to disagree.
 
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