Washing EWLs to save a bad sac


Mar 21, 2012
Hey folks, I just wanted to share something a little unusual in the hopes that it helps save some spiders someday.

I had a Chilobrachys dyscolus sac go bad recently. Long story short, when I opened it (and turned it inside out) it looked like this:

Gross, right? Now I managed to pick a few promising-looking EWLs out of that mess, which looked like this:

As you may or may not be able to see, they were completely covered in the nasty goo that was their siblings. Without intervention, I knew that they would suffocate. I figured it was better to take a chance and try to save them than to leave them to certain death, so I gently washed them with room-temperature distilled water. They dried quickly on a paper towel, and I settled down to see what would happen.

I started with 25. Over the next few days about a third ended up turning moldy. I don't know if the water killed them or if I had been too late to save them from suffocating. Within a week they had darkened up and started molting to 1i.

Unfortunately, a few of the first to molt to 1i started eating their siblings and one got stuck molting. I ended up with 10 1i. I separated them, putting each into its own little condiment cup.

9 made it to 2i! The survivors all ate and are doing well so far.

I got SUPER lucky with the timing. If I hadn't washed them when I did I would have lost the whole sac to mold or suffocation. This post is just to share a little something I've never heard of before and hope that it comes in handy for someone someday.

If anyone else has done this successfully, more input would be nice. I'm always trying to add to the toolbox.