Thinking about buying Theraphosa blondi/stirmi? at LPS

Dominatus

Arachnopeon
Joined
Mar 30, 2008
Messages
38
I am revving up my arachnid addiction after a couple years hiatus (life got crazy and I was sadden after I lost a couple of T's to not so clear circumstances) I am already planing on selling/trading some of my L para 3-4" (have 4) and buying new slings of varying species BUT!!! I stopped in at a LPS that I had seen tarantulas at years ago (got my 7" L para from them 1-2 years ago, she was 5-6" then) and they had a "Goliath Bird Eating Tarantula" for $130, 6" ish. I'm not confident in my ability in telling the difference between blondi and stirmi (blondi should have "hairier" legs/knees?) but I plan on going back to take a second look after looking at tons of pics on the forums. Also would like to try to get a look at underside to see if I can tell sex via epiandrous fusillae presence. Now, this is a species I figured I'd get someday for sure, but here one is physically in reach and it has me thinking real hard about it. So many scary thoughts!

1) I don't have any fancy acrylic cages with vents, just some 30"x12"x12" (and smaller) glass aquariums with mesh lids and I've always used pure peat moss for my enclosures, but I'm worried about keeping humidity and temperatures (always let the tarantulas chill at house temps, 64-68 in winter and 74-78 in the summer) at the right levels to keep a blondi/stirmi healthy. For my L paras and A. geniculatas I've just kept water dishes full and peat moss moist for humidity, nothing fancy. (and I'm always stressing I'm going to get mold if I keep it too moist, too long and then stressing that it will be hard to get it moist/humid again if I let it dry to much! heh)

2) I know this T sp. has been fed 1 mouse per 1-2 week at this pet store (they told me) so who knows if I'll have problems with molting as it gets large, if its a female and lives to get huge that is. Not the best food source with all the anecdotal calcium rich food problem stories out there.

3) If I was to "graduate" to such a harder species to care for and grow it'd be nice if it was an actual T. blondi that I could care for at a younger/smaller size to have a better chance at better health and CB status. Also would be kewl to say I have a Goliath and not feel guilty for spreading the blondi/stirmi confusion, heh.

So, any thoughts? concerns? advice? Too cheap or expensive? (really up to me and what I value it all at in the end) To be honest, if it wasn't there, physically at my LPS I'd prob put off searching the forums and it's dealers for a blondi/stirmi just because I feel like I need a better setup and habits/methods then what I've been using, for these more sensitive species, but perhaps I'm underselling myself? Heck, there could be one on these forums but I just haven't looked!

Would simple changes help a lot if I got this T. sp? Like a switch of substrate to help humidity and lower chances of mold? Any economical and simple methods of raising this particular enclosure temp? (could always stick her in a closet with a ceramic lamp or something, seems like a silly solution though)
Any tips for telling blondi vs stirmi and sex?

I've read and read the forums since seeing the T at the pet shop but just figured I'd ask, what could it hurt. And sorry for the wall of text, I'm good at that :8o

Ah, if only I was rich and could order custom made acrylic cages and build a special T room. :drool:

Thanks in advance for any thoughts!

-Dominatus
 

Unravel

Arachnosquire
Joined
Nov 27, 2010
Messages
140
Honestly, i would buy from a breeder. Im not sure about your LPS, but i saw a "goliath bird eater" which was a t. stirmi, unsexed 5', living in horrible dry conditions in a huge TALL tank, on the wrong substrate, being fed nothing but mice. With how picky those Ts are, id be very scared to buy it from the store. The price they're giving you is average, can always wait for the next reptile show and grab one there for that or less!

Pet stores suck ;)
 

Dominatus

Arachnopeon
Joined
Mar 30, 2008
Messages
38
yeah, similar conditions here Unravel. You pretty much mirrored my thoughts, just wanted to hear someone else say it I suppose, heh.

Think I'll just pass and wait for another day and watch the forums for a sling or something.

Any other thoughts welcomed of course.

-Dominatus
 

AgentD006las

Arach-how about..NO
Old Timer
Joined
Jan 30, 2010
Messages
590
If its in a LPS chances its not a T. blondi and is T. stirmi. BUT The T. stirmi is just as awesome IMO. One of My LPS actually listens to the advice i have offered. Its hard to offer advice sometimes. But if the people who take care of the spiders hear the same correction from more hobbiest they might keep them in better conditions or research more. Its worth pointing out. Id also mention people would be more prone to buy from a LPS if they were in ideal conditions.
 
Last edited:

Dominatus

Arachnopeon
Joined
Mar 30, 2008
Messages
38
Yeah, I like this LPS, always taken good care of me when I've done business with them, but the more I learn the more I see there is so much I don't know and so much other people don't know, like this LPS. Perhaps I'll casually drop in conversation what conditions T. sp is usually kept in and let it alone after that. Thanks for the replies!
 

Spidershane1

Arachnoknight
Joined
Apr 11, 2010
Messages
170
What I think a good solution would be.....

Inform them about the mouse thing and that they should seriously switch over to roaches or crickets. Tell them that she WILL die if they dont switch her(even though its not technically been proven) - that way even if they don't care about her well being, the prospect of a $130 loss should at least set them straight.
Then sit back and wait.....

1)
If she hasn't been sold by her next molt, and actually has a successful molt, then the calcium thing should not be a future issue as long as she stays on roaches.
2)
Have them save the molt for you. You will be able to sex her for sure with a 6 inch molt. Even if you don't know how, there are tarantula societies in the U.S. that will sex your molt for free & all you have to do is mail it to them.
3)
Sometime between now & then, go back there and try to get a close-up picture of her. Specifically, her patella(knees). Post the pics here and you will find out if you have a stirmi or a blondi. I beleive blondi has much more prounced setae on the patella, while this appears to be obviously lacking on stirmi. Blondis are also pretty dang rare these days and worth much more money.

So if she is there until her next molt, you will then know the sex, species, and also if she will be fine or not from the mouse feedings. You just may end with a perfectly healthy 7in+ female true blondi for $130, which would be a killer deal. Even $130 for a healthy 7in female stirmi is not a bad deal either.
Plus who knows, it might end up being a male stirmi with molting problems and half its legs missing- or even dead.

I think this is the way to go, because you will know exactly what you are getting. Weither it ends up being the deal of the century or a major rip-off, at least you will have all the facts before you drop a fat chunk of cash on what is essentially a coin toss at this point.
At $130 for a bug, theres a good chance the general public won't immediatly be bashing the doors down to buy it, so theres a real possibilty that it will stay there until it molts.

And in the meantime, you can build up your collection with other T's! :)

Sorry for the long post, I got really into this idea lol. I hope it works out for you & good luck.

-Shane
 

Dominatus

Arachnopeon
Joined
Mar 30, 2008
Messages
38
That is an awesome line of thought Spidershane, thank you. I believe I will do just that.

-Dominatus
 

Falk

Arachnodemon
Old Timer
Joined
May 28, 2009
Messages
679
Dont buy from petstores, That Theraphosa sp. is probably wildcought and is that good you think?
 

Dominatus

Arachnopeon
Joined
Mar 30, 2008
Messages
38
No really Falk. The practice of wild caught of many species doesn't sit well with me when I am honest with myself. I believe I still let them know they might consider different husbandry methods for their Theraphosa sp. And I have plenty of time, following spidershanes advice, to decide if I really want to support the practice of, what is most likely, a WC Theraphosa.

-Dominatus
 

Falk

Arachnodemon
Old Timer
Joined
May 28, 2009
Messages
679
No really Falk. The practice of wild caught of many species doesn't sit well with me when I am honest with myself. I believe I still let them know they might consider different husbandry methods for their Theraphosa sp. And I have plenty of time, following spidershanes advice, to decide if I really want to support the practice of, what is most likely, a WC Theraphosa.

-Dominatus
Sounds good:)
 

Spidershane1

Arachnoknight
Joined
Apr 11, 2010
Messages
170
That is an awesome line of thought Spidershane, thank you. I believe I will do just that.

-Dominatus
Your welcome:)
And as far as the wild caught thing, it probably is WC, but thats a seperate issue and is really a personal choice based on your own beleifs.
What I suggested in my previous post was simply a way for you to insure the quality and health of that one particular specimen, and to make sure that you would be getting a fair deal for yourself if you eventually decided to purchace.
Theraphosas can be a trickier species to keep, but also very appealing because its the biggest T around & I think it would probably have a better home with you instead of some random dude who just wanted that "dinner plate" spider that he saw on TV.
Putting aside the importation business issues, that T still needs a good home regardless. And if it ends up being one that you really want and you can give it a good life, then I say go for it. Thats just my 2 cents though.

Lemme know whatever you end up doing & good luck.

Happy trails,
-Shane
 
Last edited:

Jacobchinarian

Arachnoknight
Joined
Aug 2, 2010
Messages
255
I bought a t “blondi” from a Lps as my first tarantula. “she” turned out to be a he stirmi. Other than that it was healthy big and cheap($90). He had a perfect molt. I guess I'm trying to say that of you do buy it expect a few disappointments.
 

Falk

Arachnodemon
Old Timer
Joined
May 28, 2009
Messages
679
As long as you buy wc animals from the petstores you are supporting the dirty trade of these animals. You might save the one in the petstore but you will help killing another. The harvesting of these popular species will lead to its extinction from the wild:mad:
 

Spidershane1

Arachnoknight
Joined
Apr 11, 2010
Messages
170
As long as you buy wc animals from the petstores you are supporting the dirty trade of these animals. You might save the one in the petstore but you will help killing another. The harvesting of these popular species will lead to its extinction from the wild:mad:
This is a whole different discussion altogether though. I think his main concerns in posting this thread, was to find out the particulars on that one specimen & to make sure it was what they were labeling it as, and if it's healthy and worth the price.
 
Top