Thursday, April 28, 2011

Tears - Peek a Boo!

Our Cobalt Blue Tarantula, Tears, stays hidden most of the time. I have occasionally found her peeking out the top of her hole if I looked in the middle of the night with the lights off. However, lately, she has been coming all the way out! Even with the lights on! She even hangs out outside her hole a little. As usual, we're hoping that this behavior change = imminent molt. That is always the hope with change in behavior.

Cobalt Blue TarantulaTears ~ active!
Haplopelma lividum
April 22, 2011 ~ 7:00am

Cobalt Blue TarantulaTears ~ out again!
Haplopelma lividum
April 24, 2011 ~ 7:30am

Compared to her gallery pic, I do believe Tears has gotten fatter! Yay!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Butch... Hanzo

Our friend has chosen a new name for our old Butch. He is now Hanzo Hasashi (Scorpion's alter ego name in Mortal Kombat). We all call him Hanzo for short. So he had a friend with 5 pinky mice and no use. He took them over for Hanzo. One, then two were put in with Hanzo and while he did seem to notice, he wasn't showing a lot of interest. By this morning, however, he finally snagged one. As of this evening, he let it go and snagged the other.

Scorpion with pinky mouseButch Hanzo - considering a pinky
Heterometrus longimanus
Asian Forest Scorpion

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Punjab in New Home

Saturday night, I got our friend Brandon to wiggle a mini meal worm through the holes at the top! It was pretty funny. Shortly thereafter, we were trying to figure out where the worm went. Then Punjab came down from the top as if to show us that he had things well in hand. lol

Poecilotheria regalisPunjab
Indian Ornamental
Poecilotheria regalis

Sunday afternoon, I found this...

Poecilotheria regalisPunjab
Indian Ornamental
Poecilotheria regalis

This had us cracking up!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Goodbye Butch

We've had a friend staying with us (again) for several days. This time, though, we have given him a pet. Brandon took Butch home with him tonight. He has just not turned out to be as entertaining as Elmo had hoped and Brandon was very interested. I never was terribly interested in scorpions.

Heterometrus longimanusButch
Asian Forest Scorpion
Heterometrus longimanus

It was so cute, Brandon read the book I gave him and then was watching YouTube videos about scorpions. There is a bait shop close to his place, so he'll be able to get crickets easily. He was fascinated and I don't doubt he'll make a great pet owner for Butch.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Rehousing Punjab

I recently readied 2 spice bottles as houses for tree-dwelling (arboreal) tarantulas. My plan was to move Punjab (Indian Ornamental / Poecilotheria regalis) as well as Tanzania (Ornamental Baboon / Heteroscodra maculata). I got a little substrate (dirt) in the bottom and then curled up some fake vine into the bottle. They look beautiful! We decided, though, that Tanzania isn't quite big enough yet. We don't want anyone escaping through the holes!

So I've been waiting (and waiting and waiting) for Punjab to be on the lid of his cage. My plan was to remove the lid and place it over the spice bottle. In the middle of cooking breakfast this morning, Elmo brought Punjab into the kitchen. I opened the spice bottle and carefully removed the lid from the current dish. I was having trouble getting the spider off the lid, though. I tried edging him with my spider paint brush. NOTE: I did not refrigerate the spider before this attempt. He is really fast. This species is known for its lightning speed. And too small to grab without fear of harming him.

Can you guess what happened next?

Bonnie catchin' Clyde

Remember that Clyde molted recently? Well as I was headed to bed last night, I grabbed the flashlight and checked on all our kids. (I usually do this right before bed, partially in hopes of seeing Tears since she hides all the time.) Well I found Bonnie in the middle of molting! I was thrilled and considered doing a photo shoot, but I already had the lights out and was headed to bed. She is looking great today!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Food Problems + Molt!

Monday evening I opened the meal worms to find... they were HUGE! I should have taken a picture. They were bigger than the babies! So Tuesday I had to take them back. That pet store doesn't carry MINI meal worms. So I returned them, picked up a couple of watering dishes, and then had to go up the street to another pet store to purchase mini meal worms. The clay dishes we've been using don't actually hold water, they just leech it through to the dirt.

Chaco Golden Knee MoltedChaco Golden Knee Molted

Elmo also noticed that the other Chaco molted. He thought it was dead at first because it was curled up. I thought both Chacos had molted, but I guess only one had. They are the same size again.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Bought Food, Lots of Food

We bought 36 large crickets, 12 small crickets, and a dish of 50 meal worms today from the pet store. After feeding all the big kids (6 tarantulas + 1 scorpion, close to 30 crickets total), we still have 36 large crickets left! After feeding 5 small crickets to the big babies, we still have 12 small crickets left. The larger the number you request, the more likely you are to get more than that. It seems to increase exponentially. Truthfully, it is really hard to count large numbers of crickets. They are wiggly buggers! Our dish of 100 meal worms didn't last as long as we'd expected. We had a lot of dead ones. We have 5 live ones left, so I just got the 50 pack today.

I also bought some fake vine stuff for lizards. I've got some new habitats set up for the arboreal babies. I do NOT know how I'm going to move them yet, but I do know I'll have to refrigerate them first. They are crazy fast! I went ahead and gave them both meal worms last night, but it can be hard to tell if they ate them since they burrow right into the dirt. I did give one of them a small cricket today, too.

Saturday, April 9, 2011


I had been waiting for Tigger to molt and today I realized he already had. I'm not sure how recently, but I realized that the last several times I'd checked on him he looked the same as he does now. He just didn't get very much bigger.

I've taken a few short videos before, but this is the first time I got a good one! I'm pretty excited about getting it. This is 1½ minutes of a very, very tiny Costa Rican Tiger Rump (Cyclosternum fasciatum) ~ still the smallest of our collection. Tigger is fighting with a small meal worm.

Tigger, fighting with dinner

Thursday, April 7, 2011

King & Clyde

Elmo found King (Goliath Birdeater) stuck by one foot to the top of his aquarium again. We keep waffling about a different cage, but I think we're just going to have to get one, perhaps this weekend. We were trying to figure out how to help him, but I couldn't even tell which way he was holding on to the screen. And then I realized... I could hear him hiss! OMG, it was so cool! I had Elmo lean in to hear it, too. I thought his entire fangs would move for that, but I guess just his mouth was moving? It sounded like one of those old wind up walking toys. Anyway, King let go on his own. He has moved all the dirt out of that corner, too. He seems alright, though. He walks around on the mesh every night.

Brachypelma albopilosum molt and burrowClyde's molt and burrow

Then I started checking on all the babies and found that Clyde (Curly Hair) had molted! However, the molt was stuck to his rump. I think I would have freaked if this hadn't happened with King already. I took the dish, backdrop, camera, and a Q-tip in to the kitchen and loosened the lid to the dish. Clyde managed to run off the old skin and into the hole, though! While I didn't get any cool shots of the mess, it is better that the separation happened without assistance. Now I'm watching Bonnie because surely that one will molt very soon. I'm sure they're from the same egg sac.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Spider in the News (from 2008)

The Telegraph reported a Giant spider eating a bird caught on camera. I could see where the big spider would eat the bird if that is what was caught in the web. Decent article. There are 2 nice photos as well.

A few days later, the same situation was caught elsewhere and again reported by The Telegraph: Bird-eating spiders: new pictures. This bird was estimated to be 10cm and took the spider 3 days to eat.