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Mexican Red Knee Tarantula

A chilean rose tarantula at Whitehouse Farm

Order:

Aranae

Family:

Theraphosidae

Group:

Brachypelma

Young:

Spiderling

Lifespan:

Up to 5 years for males, up to 30 years for females

Gestation:

Less than 3 months, 100s of eggs

Distribution:

Southwest Mexico

Habitat:

Tropical forests, scrub, desert

Diet:

Insects, small frogs and lizards, mice

Conservation Status:

Near Threatened

 

Facts

Named for its distinctive red banded legs, the Mexican Red Knee Tarantula Brachypelma smithi is a calm and docile creature, and will only use its defence of kicking stiff hairs from its abdomen if is has no other choice.

Like all tarantula species, they regularly moult their exoskeleton in order to grow in size and to repair any damaged limbs. To prepare for this, they become slow and do not eat to conserve energy. Once they have moulted, they may not eat for up to a month afterwards, as their fangs will still be soft and undeveloped.

They are known to carve deep burrows, both for safety and to ambush prey. If they want privacy, such as if they are moulting or laying eggs, they will seal the burrow entrance with silk and debris. 

 

 

Did you know?

The ends of their legs are very sensitive, and the tarantula uses them to detect vibrations, smells and even tastes!