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  1. #1
    BPnet Veteran Snagrio's Avatar
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    Entering new territory. My first tarantula.

    So, I noticed a peculiar sign in front of a display at one of my local pet stores, saying that the animal was looking for a new home and was free. Asked the manager about it and apparently any animals that fail to find a home for half a year or more are effectively adopted out. And, well, my foray into isopods with my snake setups already made me curious with inverts and I already had an empty 10 gallon sitting around so...




    Aphonopelma seemani, or Costa Rican zebra/stripe knee tarantula. Not sure on the sex as I've shown pics of the ventral area to those more knowledgeable than I and I've heard both (I'm guessing female though), but I have the closeup shot if any T keepers want to give it a look.

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  3. #2
    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    Ooh, congratulations! I've kept a T in the past- just a California native one, & only for about 6 mos. I'm no expert- I was told mine was a female based on the large abdomen ("opisthosoma") but I'm not sure that's an accurate way to tell. I like the black & white markings on yours.

    This says the best way to tell is from a shed, so it might be a while before you find out. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mf5SujzLmQc
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

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  5. #3
    BPnet Veteran Snagrio's Avatar
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    Re: Entering new territory. My first tarantula.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bogertophis View Post
    Ooh, congratulations! I've kept a T in the past- just a California native one, & only for about 6 mos. I'm no expert- I was told mine was a female based on the large abdomen ("opisthosoma") but I'm not sure that's an accurate way to tell. I like the black & white markings on yours.

    This says the best way to tell is from a shed, so it might be a while before you find out. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mf5SujzLmQc
    Yeah that's generally what I've heard, you have to wait for a molt and examine the insides.

  6. #4
    Registered User plateOfFlan's Avatar
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    Re: Entering new territory. My first tarantula.

    Congrats! I have a very teeny A seemanni who has been sequestered underground for :checks calendar: over 3 months now. I caught it outside the other night so I know it's alive!
    They're known for endearingly quirky personalities - they like to do things like perform elaborate floatation experiments with their water dish or rearrange everything in the tank for no reason. If you offer yours a ping pong ball or other light item they can pick up they might play with it, they're weird little guys.

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  8. #5
    Registered User YungRasputin's Avatar
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    1) i am so relieved that it’s actually a legitimate beginner species - totally perfect first T!

    2) she is female as indicated by the flap on her abdomen (in between and just above her books lungs) where the pedipalps would be inserted

    3) if you have any questions or concerns in your arachnid journey you can always shoot me a PM and i would be happy to help!
    Last edited by YungRasputin; 12-17-2022 at 01:51 AM.
    het for nothing but groovy

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  10. #6
    Registered User YungRasputin's Avatar
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    Re: Entering new territory. My first tarantula.

    Quote Originally Posted by Snagrio View Post
    Yeah that's generally what I've heard, you have to wait for a molt and examine the insides.
    in spiderlings (“slings”) and juveniles yes because they’re simply to small to visually discern with any accuracy without using equipment (eg: microscope) however when they’re adults, like what you have, there are physical characteristics that differentiate them that you’ll be able to tell eg: females will have the flap on the abdomen and males will “hook out” i.e. you’ll visually be able to see their “tibial hooks”
    Last edited by YungRasputin; 12-17-2022 at 02:02 AM.
    het for nothing but groovy

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  12. #7
    BPnet Veteran Snagrio's Avatar
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    Re: Entering new territory. My first tarantula.

    Quote Originally Posted by YungRasputin View Post
    1) i am so relieved that it’s actually a legitimate beginner species - totally perfect first T!

    2) she is female as indicated by the flap on her abdomen (in between and just above her books lungs) where the pedipalps would be inserted

    3) if you have any questions or concerns in your arachnid journey you can always shoot me a PM and i would be happy to help!
    Interesting. From what I read, A. Seemani was considered "intermediate" due to being skittish, fast and not wanting to be handled. But I didn't really see much of the speed when I moved her into the tank, and no tarantula actively likes being handled so, yeah, kind of weird. And this was a big box store so I wasn't exactly expecting any advanced species to be sold there anyway (but I did do my due research beforehand regardless).

    You're the second person to suggest she's female, so I guess it's a safe bet that's what she is by now.

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  14. #8
    Registered User YungRasputin's Avatar
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    Re: Entering new territory. My first tarantula.

    Quote Originally Posted by Snagrio View Post
    Interesting. From what I read, A. Seemani was considered "intermediate" due to being skittish, fast and not wanting to be handled. But I didn't really see much of the speed when I moved her into the tank, and no tarantula actively likes being handled so, yeah, kind of weird. And this was a big box store so I wasn't exactly expecting any advanced species to be sold there anyway (but I did do my due research beforehand regardless).

    You're the second person to suggest she's female, so I guess it's a safe bet that's what she is by now.
    personally i think they’re the perfect “beginner” species insomuch as their speed is what’s more common within T species as the stoic pet rocks that is the Brachypelma species isn’t really reflective of the whole animal and how they typically behave - *most* NW (new world) and (most especially) OW (old world) species will be this fast/defensive or faster/more defensive so it’s the perfect way to go
    het for nothing but groovy

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  16. #9
    BPnet Veteran Snagrio's Avatar
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    Re: Entering new territory. My first tarantula.

    Quote Originally Posted by YungRasputin View Post
    personally i think they’re the perfect “beginner” species insomuch as their speed is what’s more common within T species as the stoic pet rocks that is the Brachypelma species isn’t really reflective of the whole animal and how they typically behave - *most* NW (new world) and (most especially) OW (old world) species will be this fast/defensive or faster/more defensive so it’s the perfect way to go
    Speaking of old worlds, if I was of experience my T of choice would be a Poecilotheria metallica. But as I've heard about old worlds as a whole they tend to be ornery and pack a nasty bite (why are all the blue animals I like notorious for testy behavior?).


    Also forgot to post the setup. Made a mixture of topsoil, play sand and sphagnum moss. There was slightly more in there but decided to take some of it and spread it under cork bark flats in the snake setups for the isopods since they only have coco husks and moss otherwise (eventually want to make all of it a proper topsoil mixture).


    It's really humid now since everything was freshly mixed the day prior to adding her. I punched more holes in the top for better air flow (I glued a sheet of tinfoil on the underside of the screen lid since I've heard that Ts can potentially get their feet stuck in the grating).



    There's also two log hides in there. One visible in the moss, and the other I buried at the opposite end just in case she digs down that direction and I can get an underground view.


    And finally a view of the girl herself this morning. I think she's a bit chilly as she's hugging the side with the heat pad (it went below freezing overnight and the basement isn't exactly a warm place). I bumped the thermostat up a bit.
    Last edited by Snagrio; 12-17-2022 at 12:56 PM.

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  18. #10
    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    Oh, by the way- now I remember why they said my (California) tarantula was surely a female, without even checking the underside: it was because of her size. The females can live 20-25 years, while the males usually only live to 7 or 8 (10 max), & her "abdomen" was the size of a ping pong ball- she was huge, & all the males I ever saw were so tiny by comparison. I don't know if the lifespan & size differential applies to any other kinds of tarantulas- as I said, my experience with them is very limited, but they're all pretty cool.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

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