1. What is the best Tarantula for a beginner? We recommend a New World terrestrial species to start with, anything in the genus Brachypelma or Grammostola will make good beginners for example because they are very hardy and docile. At the end of the day some Tarantulas are more aggressive/faster than others and the potency of the venom can vary, but as long as you're not trying to handle them and you look up how to care for them properly, you and the Tarantulas will be fine.
2. Are Tarantulas poisonous? Poison is ingested and venom is injected so unless you're planning on eating them you will be fine. All Tarantulas have a certain degree of venom, some stronger than others.
3. Can you die from a Tarantula bite? No Tarantula related deaths have ever been recorded; however some people will suffer worse side effects than others from the venom and hairs.
4. How soon should I feed my Tarantula after it moults? Leave it at least a week (7 days) before feeding a freshly moulted Tarantula.
5. How often will a Tarantula moult? Species vary but spiderlings generally moult around once a month, they do this so they can grow bigger. As they age and reach their max size they take longer and longer between moults, sometimes years.
6. What should I feed my Tarantula? Captive bred live food only such as Crickets, Roaches, Mealworms, Locusts etc; a food item as large as the spiders abdomen is the recommended size meal.
7. How often should I feed my Tarantula? Tarantulas have a very slow metabolism and don't need food very often; for spiderlings we advise feeding slightly more often to help them grow or for a Juvenile-Adult once a week, once every two weeks or up to a month is fine. It is good to alternate when you feed to help imitate how they would eat in the wild.
8. My Chile Rose (Or other species) hasn't eaten in about 2 weeks, should I be worried? Tarantulas have a very slow metabolism, some adults can fast for months even over a year before eating again, they could also be premoult.
9. How can I tell if my Male/Female Tarantula is mature? Females can breed from 75% of their adult size, males can only breed in their ultimate/mature moult and they can't moult again (Only on very rare freak occasions they have been known to). When all male Tarantulas mature they come out the moult with bulbous pedipalps, and most species have tibial hooks on the first pair of legs.
10. What's the difference between New World and Old World species? New World Tarantulas will flick urticating hair as their primary defence mechanism; Old World species lack urticating hairs but make up for it by having a more venomous bite.
New World/Old World are referenced from the European point of view and Columbus' discovery of the "New World".
Old World Tarantulas are found in the "Old World", Africa, Asia, etc.
New World Tarantulas are found in the "New World", North and South America etc. When the Americas were discovered, they were the "New World".
11. Can I keep my Tarantulas together? Tarantulas are cannibalistic and solitary creatures so they can't live together; however several known species will tolerate living with their siblings from a young age but most of the time it ends badly.
12. How do I handle my Tarantula? There's no point of handling a Tarantula they wouldn't be handled in the wild; they can't be tamed and don't benefit from it at all. If you need to move your Tarantula gently brush the spiders back legs or abdomen to make it move forward into a catch cup.
13. What sort of enclosure will be suitable for a Tarantula? The rule of thumb is any Tarantula species at any size should be kept in an enclosure approximately 3 x their leg span and twice wide. With terrestrial species floor space is more important than height and with arboreal species height is more important than floor space. Fossorial species will benefit from deeper enclosures. All of our spiderlings come in suitable containers for their first homes.
14. Do I need to keep them warm? How do I do this? Most Tarantulas will be OK at room temperature, they say if you're comfortable in a T-shirt the Tarantula will be fine.
A temperature controlled room is best for more serious hobbyists or you can use heat mats wisely but not directly underneath the enclosures. Please check the recommended temperature for your species.
15. What substrate can I use? Coco Fibre is usually the substrate of choice or there are alternatives such as Organic/Natural Dark Peat (You can get this from your local garden centre cheap, good for keeping quantity) or ready made Tarantula mixes.
16. How do I give them water and is tap water ok? Bottled water is best or you can leave tap water in the bottle for a few days for the chemicals to evaporate, you can use a water sprayer to mist lightly but never spray the spider directly!
You can introduce a wide shallow water dish once the Tarantula is around 2.5 inches, and adults must always have access to fresh water.