Children's Zoo at Celebration Square
- Females: 15 years
- Males: 3 years
- Length: 4 - 5.5 inches
- Weight: 2 - 3 oz
- Chile and the surrounding countries to the north
- Mostly deserts and scrubland, ranging from coastal lowlands to more mountainous areas (inhabiting low shrubs).
- Hubidity needs to be high (around 80% and up) and wet sphagnum moss, damp verniculite, or damp orchid bark will accomplish this.
- 70 - 85°F
- Wild: Small lizards, young snakes, amphibians, and small mammals such as rodents. Smaller forest dwelling or desert species prey on grasshoppers, beetles, or other spiders.
- Zoo: 3 - 5 crickets per week. This animal will not overeat, and may be intimidated if offered too many insects at one time.
- Mating takes place at various times according to the species, usually in the fall from September to October. After mating, the female may eat the male.
- The Chilean Rose Hair Tarantula deposits 500 - 1000 eggs once per year wrapped in silk and guard the sack for 6 - 7 weeks.
- There are two basic types of spiders, web spinners and wandering spiders. Tarantulas are wandering spiders, spending most of their time on the ground, in burrows, under rocks, inside tree hollows, and in other protected places.
- Most wandering spiders have hairy legs and bodies. The hair is very sensitive and helps them find their way along the ground locating prey.
- They have to look for their food, so they require good eyesight.
- Wandering spiders live on the ground, in burrows, under rocks, inside tree hollows, and in other protected places.
- They have two claws on each foot and between them is a pad of hair. The claws give them a firm grip for walking on slippery surfaces.
- Wandering spiders hunt in different ways. Some stalk insects, some climb trees, and others dig burrows to hide from their prey. There are also spiders that “fish” for prey, by diving underwater to kill fish, and one that catches prey by spitting on them.
- Tarantula predators include animals such as coatimundis, raccoons, and skunks; one of their most deadly predators is the spider-hunting wasp which enters the spiders burrow, paralyzes it with its stinger, and drags it back to its nest.
Tarantulas & Humans
- Spiders are the most important predators of insects; they help keep gardens healthy by protecting plants and controlling insect populations.
- These are the most docile and easiest to handle group of spiders.
- All tarantulas are venomous spiders, but do not carry enough venom to kill a person. However, some people may be allergic to their venom, and can be hospitilized.
- Tarantulas have a resting heart rate of 30-40 beats per minute, however after 30 seconds of activity this may go up to 200 beats per minute.
- No human is ever known to have died of a tarantula bite.
- Tarantulas have two pairs of booklungs, while most spiders have only one pair.
- The largest recorded spider in the world was a tarantula. It was a member of the species Pseudotherathosa apophysis, which had a leg span of almost 13 inches.
- IUCN: Not Listed
- CITES: Not Listed
- CITES Appendices. Accessed December 2012. www.cites.org
- IUCN Red List. Accessed December 2012. www.iucnredlist.org
- Chilean Rose Hair Tarantula: Grammostola gala – by Animal World.
- Zoobooks: Spiders. Timothy Levi Biel