What is this?

Edman

Arachnopeon
Joined
Dec 4, 2016
Messages
25
Hey arachnoboards! I'm new to this site and new to tarantula keeping. I am currently owning a B. smithi juvenile (unsexed, 2.5 - 3 inches diagonal leg span). and it molted last monday. What I am wondering is what the grey stuff is on the substrate. Is it webbing or is it something else? Should I be concerned? Thanks for your answers!
 

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chanda

Arachnoking
Old Timer
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Jun 27, 2010
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2,060
I can't really get a good enough look at it in your picture to be certain what you have. It is not uncommon for a tarantula to put down a layer of webbing over their substrate, but this looks more like you might have mold growing on your substrate. Mold in an enclosure is not good for your tarantula.

I'd recommend using a pair of feeding tongs to pull out a bit of the grey stuff to examine it closely. If it is webbing, it will be obvious when you pull it out. If, on the other hand, it's a layer of mold that's growing on the substrate, then you should do a complete cleanout and replace your substrate, then reconsider how moist you keep the enclosure. B. smithi prefer their substrate to be on the dry side. Substrate that is too wet is susceptible to mold and mites.
 
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Robyn8

Arachnoknight
Joined
Feb 24, 2016
Messages
195
It looks too dark for me to be webbing. l think its mold. it seems to be creeping towards her hide too. i'd rehouse asap.
 

Edman

Arachnopeon
Joined
Dec 4, 2016
Messages
25
Yeah, I didn't want to risk it so I changed it before I got the first reply. Thanks anyway. I think I screwed up with using too much water for my substrate (eco earth or whatever it's called, the big block thing). Anyone know how to make the substrate completely dry before I put it back into the cage? It said 30 mins of waiting but I think it's still too moist for her.
 

ledzeppelin

Arachnobaron
Joined
Jan 8, 2013
Messages
434
I agree. It looks like mold. Rehouse ASAP or your T might die. What substrate do you have? And how much do you wet it? Is it possible that there were remains of crickets/mealworms/roaches left in the enclosure? Those can mold pretty fast..
 

ledzeppelin

Arachnobaron
Joined
Jan 8, 2013
Messages
434
Yeah, I didn't want to risk it so I changed it before I got the first reply. Thanks anyway. I think I screwed up with using too much water for my substrate (eco earth or whatever it's called, the big block thing). Anyone know how to make the substrate completely dry before I put it back into the cage? It said 30 mins of waiting but I think it's still too moist for her.
Try to scatter it in a shallow cardboard box and put it on a radiator.. You should have a warm radiator, since you're from Sweden :p
 

Edman

Arachnopeon
Joined
Dec 4, 2016
Messages
25
Like my previous post I use coconut fibre as my substrate. I don't shower my cage at all if it's that what you mean. And she hadn't eaten ever since I got her because she was in pre-molt. So the only answer I could think of was that the substrate was too moist
 

Edman

Arachnopeon
Joined
Dec 4, 2016
Messages
25
Try to scatter it in a shallow cardboard box and put it on a radiator.. You should have a warm radiator, since you're from Sweden :p
Haha yeah, I will defintely try that. I thought about scatter it over some old news papers to make it dry faster but a cardboard box works probably better!
 

ledzeppelin

Arachnobaron
Joined
Jan 8, 2013
Messages
434
Haha yeah, I will defintely try that. I thought about scatter it over some old news papers to make it dry faster but a cardboard box works probably better!
Well newspaper would work just as well, but it might tear and you'll have a mess :D
 

Edman

Arachnopeon
Joined
Dec 4, 2016
Messages
25
Well newspaper would work just as well, but it might tear and you'll have a mess :D
How can I be 100% sure there are no more spores in the cage? I rather not go through this process again, atleast not in a close future :s
 

ledzeppelin

Arachnobaron
Joined
Jan 8, 2013
Messages
434
How can I be 100% sure there are no more spores in the cage? I rather not go through this process again, atleast not in a close future :s
Well you could try either boiling the substrate for a few hours, which will take you a lot of time to dry afterwards, or you could scatter it on a tray and put it in an oven for a few hours.. If you choose an oven, please be careful not to burn your house down :D I don't want to be responsible for that :p
 

Edman

Arachnopeon
Joined
Dec 4, 2016
Messages
25
Well you could try either boiling the substrate for a few hours, which will take you a lot of time to dry afterwards, or you could scatter it on a tray and put it in an oven for a few hours.. If you choose an oven, please be careful not to burn your house down :D I don't want to be responsible for that :p
Oh boy, I guess there's no easy way to be 100% sure is there. Oh well. I just hope my T didn't mind too much that I changed its home for a bit.
 

ledzeppelin

Arachnobaron
Joined
Jan 8, 2013
Messages
434
Oh boy, I guess there's no easy way to be 100% sure is there. Oh well. I just hope my T didn't mind too much that I changed its home for a bit.
just keep it dry and you won't have mold :) a water dish with an overfill about once a month is plenty :)
 

KezyGLA

Arachnoking
Joined
Apr 8, 2016
Messages
3,033
Is the hide made from natural wood? I have noticed that natural wood will cause mould with even the slightest bit of moisture/dampness. Swap out the wood for cork bark tube/slab to use fore hide instead
 
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Edman

Arachnopeon
Joined
Dec 4, 2016
Messages
25
Is the hide made from natural wood? I have noticed that natural wood will cause mould with even the clightest bit of moisture/dampness. Swap out the wood for cork bark tube/slab to use fore hide instead
The hide is made from cork bark if I'm not mistaken :)
 

KezyGLA

Arachnoking
Joined
Apr 8, 2016
Messages
3,033
Exo Terra Vivariums arent the best for terrestrial Ts either as risk of casualty from a fall. Exo terra large faunariums do fine for adult smithis. A medium would be perfect size for your smithi just now. They arent too expensive either.
 

Edman

Arachnopeon
Joined
Dec 4, 2016
Messages
25
Exo Terra Vivariums arent the best for terrestrial Ts either as risk of casualty from a fall. Exo terra large faunariums do fine for adult smithis. A medium would be perfect size for your smithi just now. They arent too expensive either.
Yeah, I was a bit sceptical but I couldn't do much since that's what the pet store said would work best and I had people with me who were more keen to agree with the pet store owner than me. So I didnt really take the debate.
 

Edman

Arachnopeon
Joined
Dec 4, 2016
Messages
25
It looks like bleached wood to me. Cork bark is really light weight in comparison and is usually darker in colour.
I might be wrong but it was sold to me as cork bark. And it's really light.
 

ledzeppelin

Arachnobaron
Joined
Jan 8, 2013
Messages
434
Is the hide made from natural wood? I have noticed that natural wood will cause mould with even the clightest bit of moisture/dampness. Swap out the wood for cork bark tube/slab to use fore hide instead
Natural wood will not mold under the circumstances:
It must be completely dry. like driftwood or something.
Wood that was used in aquariums will never mold.
Tree roots will never mold. - roots are designed to live underground in moist conditions. :D
 
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