Terrestrial Ts hanging out on the side of their enclosures

Garth Vader

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Hello arachnofriends,

I've had my sub adult F G pulchripes for about 6 weeks now. She's a lovely one and I'm very confused because she hangs out on the side of the enclosure pretty much anytime I look at her. The substrate is completely dry and she has a hide.

Now I'm noticing that the others are doing this too, and they are all facing in the same direction. So (large, probably ready to sex at next molt) sling A anax and AF E sp "red" have been doing the same thing. This seems so odd to me, as they are all terrestrial species so it makes me think they are uncomfortable in their enclosures.

I wonder if it can be related to a few things, so let me describe where they live first.

They each are in hobby lobby cases with drilled holes. They have dry coconut husk substrate and they each have a water dish, hide, and a plant.
Their enclosures are on a shelf in a very small closet in my office. I open the closet bi-fold door a bit to let in air when I am not in sessions. Because I am around during the day, this does let in some light. I also leave the door open a bit for air circulation when I leave at night.
My office is fairly quiet, but not always. They hear me talk with my patients all day long and the clinic restroom is on the other side of the closet so they share a wall with the sink. I do not observe a lot of noise coming from there. There is not banging or anything loud.
When I see them on the sides of their enclosures they are all on the west facing side, the side of the building we are in, and away from the light (the closet door is east facing).
It's just about spring time in Seattle so we are actually starting to have a bit more sunlight. I keep the blinds drawn in my office and use a few lamps when I am in there, so it's light but not overly so (like overhead lights or something).

Okay so here's what I am wondering:

-Are they just being Ts?
-Do they have enough air? Is it possible that they struggling because they are in that tiny closet and they are on the side because that's where the holes are?
-Could this be related to light? For all I know, they are happily chilling on the ground until I come in and turn on lights and crack open the closet. In which case, is it better for me to darken the room a bit more?

One other thing I've considered is to replace the closet door with a blackout curtain which will block out light but also facilitate air circulation so I don't have to open the door in that way to check on them and to let the air circulate.

Thanks for reading all of this. I have seriously been scratching my head, seeing all 3 of my Ts doing this same behavior at the same time.
 

EulersK

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I don't believe that the issue is light, although it is curious that they're all clinging to the same side at the same time. I also don't believe that it's an air flow issue. My roach colonies are in a similar closet, and you better believe that they'd use more air than a few tarantulas. If this is consistently happening, then I'd say it's more than just a T being a T. You mentioned an office - I assume pesticides aren't being sprayed that you know of? What about any fragrant things in the room, like candles or air fresheners?
 

Garth Vader

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I don't believe that the issue is light, although it is curious that they're all clinging to the same side at the same time. I also don't believe that it's an air flow issue. My roach colonies are in a similar closet, and you better believe that they'd use more air than a few tarantulas. If this is consistently happening, then I'd say it's more than just a T being a T. You mentioned an office - I assume pesticides aren't being sprayed that you know of? What about any fragrant things in the room, like candles or air fresheners?
I'm glad I'm not the only one who sees this as odd. I figured if they were all doing it then something must be up. the G Pulcrhipes has been on the sides consistently since I got her. I just started to notice the others doing it this week.

Hmmm.
I've asked the office cleaners to refrain from spraying anything in my office, they vacuum and that is it. When I dust in there I used a wet cloth rather than sprays. I don't use candles. Sometimes air freshener is sprayed in the bathroom- it would need to be sprayed quite profusely with all the doors open to get to the Ts, from what I can imagine, and I never smell it in my office (and I have a VERY sensitive sense of smell, unfortunately!). I occasionally spray a little bit of room freshener in my office- when I do it is very sparingly and off in the corner and towards the ground as far from the Ts as I can get. I do this when food smells waft in from the other office. Someone likes to reheat fish in that office apparently. By the way, that's not cool, people. Stinky.

Now you have a picture of me sniffing around my office, hiding from the light, and spraying things in the corner. Haha.
 

EulersK

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I'm glad I'm not the only one who sees this as odd. I figured if they were all doing it then something must be up. the G Pulcrhipes has been on the sides consistently since I got her. I just started to notice the others doing it this week.

Hmmm.
I've asked the office cleaners to refrain from spraying anything in my office, they vacuum and that is it. When I dust in there I used a wet cloth rather than sprays. I don't use candles. Sometimes air freshener is sprayed in the bathroom- it would need to be sprayed quite profusely with all the doors open to get to the Ts, from what I can imagine, and I never smell it in my office (and I have a VERY sensitive sense of smell, unfortunately!). I occasionally spray a little bit of room freshener in my office- when I do it is very sparingly and off in the corner and towards the ground as far from the Ts as I can get. I do this when food smells waft in from the other office. Someone likes to reheat fish in that office apparently. By the way, that's not cool, people. Stinky.

Now you have a picture of me sniffing around my office, hiding from the light, and spraying things in the corner. Haha.
How strange. Do any of them have a stress curl or anything similar? Are they all on the same batch of substrate? The only think I can think of is perhaps the substrate has something wrong with it. Before changing it out, wait for some other members to chime in. I can't think of anything other than the substrate.
 

Garth Vader

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How strange. Do any of them have a stress curl or anything similar? Are they all on the same batch of substrate? The only think I can think of is perhaps the substrate has something wrong with it. Before changing it out, wait for some other members to chime in. I can't think of anything other than the substrate.
There doesn't seem to be a stress curl for any of them. The E sp red has been pretty lethargic since her molt last month but she has eaten and I see her moving around a bit more (at first she was in her hide only). The A anax is a little piggy and eats everything I give him, so he has come down to eat. I need to hold off on food for a while because he is faaaaaat at this point and I don't want him to get hurt.

As for substrate- no it isn't all the same batch. The E sp red has had the same substrate since I got her in July 2017, the others have the same substrate. If it keeps up, maybe I'll consider changing out the substrate for all of them, but I really don't want to disrupt them unless I have to.
 

Andrea82

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I see my T's do this, when the temp in the room is lower than that of the heatcable. They'll sit to the side closest to the warmth.
It could be the back of your closet is the warmest side, since open doors or windows brings in fresh, (but in this time of year often) chilly air, which enters the closet through the open front doors.
 

Jeff23

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Here's a few assorted questions.
Does the T act like it wants to climb out when you open the container (does it move closer to the lip)?
Are the enclosures full sized for the tarantulas (not needing rehousing soon)?
Are the hides full size (provide full privacy for the tarantula)? Do the T's ever use their hides?
 

Garth Vader

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Here's a few assorted questions.
Does the T act like it wants to climb out when you open the container (does it move closer to the lip)?
Are the enclosures full sized for the tarantulas (not needing rehousing soon)?
Are the hides full size (provide full privacy for the tarantula)? Do the T's ever use their hides?
No, the Ts don't act like they want to climb out, except recently the E sp red which is rather consistent for her behavior. The other 2 scramble away.
The A anax will likely need to be rehoused after his next molt if he grows as much as he did during his last molt. The enclosure is full size for him now, and actually maybe a bit long. He hasn't used his hide much since I rehoused him and I've considered giving him a different one (a lot of it is buried and he isn't using it, and he did a lot in his old house and actually was buried so much back then, now he's out almost all the time).
Edited to add- the enclosure for the adult E sp red is really quite big for her, but since she likes to roam I've figured it works.
The same for the G pulchripes, I actually think her enclosure might be a bit on the small side. I have never seen her use the cork hide, but she does hide behind the plant sometimes.
E sp red used her hide a lot after her recent molt but not as much now.
I also have a tiny sling E sp red and it hasn't changed habits much, pretty much buried all the time and then trying to climb out when I open the little enclosure.

@Andrea82 this makes sense about the heat/ cool air also. I do think that side of the closet would be the warmest because it is the corner. The temp in the closet is usually from 68-74 F. The lower temps are at night, and I imagine when I open the closet it brings in cooler air from the larger room.
 

Jeff23

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No, the Ts don't act like they want to climb out, except recently the E sp red which is rather consistent for her behavior. The other 2 scramble away.
The A anax will likely need to be rehoused after his next molt if he grows as much as he did during his last molt. The enclosure is full size for him now, and actually maybe a bit long. He hasn't used his hide much since I rehoused him and I've considered giving him a different one (a lot of it is buried and he isn't using it, and he did a lot in his old house and actually was buried so much back then, now he's out almost all the time).
Edited to add- the enclosure for the adult E sp red is really quite big for her, but since she likes to roam I've figured it works.
The same for the G pulchripes, I actually think her enclosure might be a bit on the small side. I have never seen her use the cork hide, but she does hide behind the plant sometimes.
E sp red used her hide a lot after her recent molt but not as much now.
I also have a tiny sling E sp red and it hasn't changed habits much, pretty much buried all the time and then trying to climb out when I open the little enclosure.

@Andrea82 this makes sense about the heat/ cool air also. I do think that side of the closet would be the warmest because it is the corner. The temp in the closet is usually from 68-74 F. The lower temps are at night, and I imagine when I open the closet it brings in cooler air from the larger room.
Your descriptions sound like typical descriptions for the T's. My G pulchripes and E. sp. red have demeanor exactly like you have described.

The only "wild" guess I could make is that the positions chosen are preferred by them for current lighting and ventilation situations. You could run a test where you monitor the room with lights off for a while or change up ventilation so that a breeze is blowing for a time period to see if the T's change position afterward.
 
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boina

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I think you may have misunderstood something. Now I know that it states everywhere that T's don't like light and that's certainly true - up to a point. T's don't like artificial light that's glaring down on them, but they might like ambient light. Actually, daylight lenght is an important clue to the seasonal changes that are very important to a T's life in nature. It tells them when to eat more, when to molt, etc. They also get clues as to day or night time: When to hunt, when to stay in and be inactive. Can they do without? Sure. Is it optimal to keep T's in complete darkness? I very much doubt that. Most T's burrows are not so deep that they don't see any light at all - and they often sit at the entrance anyway. It's not a black and white thing: Light or no light. It's gray: a little bit of ambient light that provides a sense of day and night is very probably beneficial for their well being.

What makes your T's climp the wall? I'm pretty sure it's the temperature gradient - that would be very typical, at least.
 

Trenor

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What makes your T's climp the wall? I'm pretty sure it's the temperature gradient - that would be very typical, at least.
This would be my guess. I noted a lot of my Ts like to move towards heat and when the temps drop a bit at night the substrate cools off. In the morning when it starts warming up the air in the enclosure warms faster than the substrate so the T will go up. It doesn't take a lot of extra heat to make one move.

I also noted when my T room gets really warm (82ish F) the Ts will move up the sides of the enclosure. They have good ventilation so after a bit the whole enclosure is the same temp but they will stay on the side till the room cools off.

I've not noted issues with this so I just let them do their thing.
 

Garth Vader

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And if those books don't do the trick, there's always the medication:D
Haha guys. I'm not an MD so no meds. I'm a pure behaviorist, to the core! It does seem that these Ts do not respond to behavioral modification techniques so what up with that?! :rofl:
 

HybridReplicate

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Temperature differential would be my guess. I use a space heater & keep the youngest closest to the heater & the older further away. In 90% of my enclosures closest to the flow of warm air the spiders will abandon their hides & cling to the side nearest the stream of warm air or cuddle up in a corner nearest the heater.
 

Chris LXXIX

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Haha guys. I'm not an MD so no meds. I'm a pure behaviorist, to the core! It does seem that these Ts do not respond to behavioral modification techniques so what up with that?! :rofl:
In all honesty my gentle 'Brain Doc' Lady from Seattle, when I've mentioned how big & cumbersome those psychiatry books are, wasn't for a lecture or else but for directly use those, as a mere weapon, for smash a Theraphosidae in the case of escape.

No eight legged can resist to the heavy power of 'Cognitive Behavior Theraphy: Basics and Beyond' or 'Shrinks: The Untold Story of Psychiatry' :pompous: si si

:troll:
 

darkness975

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Mine will become noticeably more active in warmer temperatures. I would think Temperature is the most likely factor here. See if there is any kind of a strange draft that is somehow getting in there. You would be surprised how air moves and where drafts can come from.

@cold blood keeps his in mostly darkness @boina so while light (or lack of it) it may be a possible factor I would lean towards temperature more than anything.

@spidertherapy78 My B. smithi does a lot of climbing on the sides too. While I would not completely rule out the possibility of an issue with Temperature or anything just keep in mind that it may or may not be a huge problem. Perhaps a simple correction of something minor (like the draft thing I mentioned) would fix the problem.

Also, with it being winter time, the dry air could be another possible factor.
 

Andrea82

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Okay, so consensus seems to agree with me, saying the temps are probably the cause.
Not sure if you need to 'fix' something like that. When temps pick up in your office, they'll probably be in their normal habits again. If you feel you need to do something, you can maybe add a space heater to keep up temps, but since the temperatures your reading says they're good, I wouldn't worry too much. Just keep an eye on them in case there is something else wrong. :)
 
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