Arizona Blond Tarantula (Aphonopelma chalcodes)

Aphonopelma, New World 2 Comments »

The Arizona Blond Tarantula is a species common in the deserts of Arizona and Southern North America. It is very well liked in the amateur community due to it being extremely docile. For the most part these are medium sized tarantulas with mature females having a body length between 2 to 3 inches and leg spans of about 4 to 5 inches. Some can be significantly smaller then this all together.  Females live to be 12+ years while males usually live to be about 8 to 10 years.





These species of tarantulas spend most of their life in the wild in the dry hot dessert. In captivity they are rather easy to handle with not needing more then a 5 to 10 gallon tank (depending on the size of your tarantula). Make sure you have a very dry substrate with a water dish. You can decorate it as much as you want with shrubs but make sure you also have a hide for your tarantula. Preferably a nice piece of bark.



The Arizona Blond tarantula is also an easy one to feed. Feeding them 1 to 2 times a week should be enough. Their diet should consist of crickets and roaches. And they do tend to not eat before a molt is to occur.



These animals are extremely slow and as stated before are extremely docile. It takes a bit to provoke them, however that does not mean they will never feel threatened. They do come with urticating hairs that they release as a defense mechanism. They might bite but only as a last resort and should not feel any worse then a bee sting. The venom though potent to insects is very harmless to humans (unless yo might have specific allergies).


The Arizona Blond Tarantula is great as a first tarantula due to its docile nature. They are easy to handle and require low maintenance. They also are very cheap in comparison to other tarantulas and an Arizona Blond could cost you around $20. We would highly recommend this as your first or even second tarantula to have if you are still a novice to the hobby.

Have a A.Chalcodes? Tell us about it. Show us your pictures! Even ask us some quetions. Comment always welcomed.


Old World and New World Tarantulas

Information, New World, Old World 1 Comment »

What are New World (NW) and Old World (OW) tarantulas?

This seems to be asked a lot in the tarantula community and a lot of people are actually shocked at how simple the answer is. New World Tarantulas are species originally discovered in North, Middle and South America. While Old World Tarantulas come from Africa, Asia, Australia and parts of Europe.


654456564           Mexican-Flame-Knee

(OW) The cobalt blue tarantula (Haplopelma lividum)       (NW) The Mexican Flame Knee (Brachypelma auratum)


What are the differences between the two?

Most New World tarantulas tend to be much slower then their counterpart Old World Tarantulas. Of course there are some exceptions especially for certain Genus’ (example: Psalmopoeus and Ephepobus). As most spiderlings are fast the aforementioned Genus’ are particularly fast.

Most Old World Tarantulas are a lot different from (NW). They are by far faster in speed and if not handling properly will easily bolt away from you.



(NW) Tarantulas have a lot of weapons of attack before resorting to biting. It’s primary form of defense is it’s urticating hairs which they shake off from their abdomen or pedipalps (depending on the genus). These small fine hairs cause immense irritation if stuck on your skin, eyes or even inhaled. Should some get lodged into your eyes you should flush it with water or seek medical attention. You might also see them go into a threat posture if you disturb them too much or they need you to back off which usually consists of them raising their front legs showing their fangs. For some species of New World tarantulas they have a defense mechanism called the poop cannon (such as the avicularia genus), though not painful or venomous it certainly is uncomfortable to get pooped on. These are all mostly indications given to you by your New World tarantula to not bother him/her before they try biting which though not potent in venom is still painful.


(OW) Tarantulas tend to be very aggressive and fast. They mostly do not have urticating hairs or other forms of defense and rely heavily on their strong bite and potent venom. Because of their lack of defenses you should handle them with utmost care (though we do not recommend you handling them at all). When threatened they go straight into a defensive stance and some even make noises by exhaling through their mouths and it even sounds aggressive. You can easily get bit by one of these tarantulas before you can even react due to their hostile behavior and speed. Though there has never been a reported case of a death from a human due to tarantula venom some old world tarantulas have a venom potent enough to cause serious pains in addition to sending you to the hospital requiring medical assistance.


To generalize New World tarantulas are more docile then Old World tarantulas and easier to handle (of course there are some exceptions). All in all do your homework as best possible when choosing either a (NW) or (OW) tarantula as a pet. We do recommend you only acquiring an (OW) once you have become a more experienced hobbyist and not as your first tarantula.


Pinktoe tarantula (Avicularia avicularia)

Avicularia, New World 1 Comment »

The Pinktoe Tarantula also known as the South American Pinktoe is also a very common spider across the US. Originally from South America these tarantulas love climbing. In the wild they live high up in trees and spin a lot of webbing. As with the Chilean Rosehair Tarantula, the pinktoe is also a very common arachnid to find in pet stores. It is very docile and a crowd favorite due to its magnificent pink toes (hence the name). This would be ideal for the intermediate tarantula lover. The reason we would say this wouldn’t be best for a beginner is due to its speed. Pinktoes are very quick and are known as jumpers and you might drop one if not handled appropriately. Other than their speed they are quit docile and can be the perfect pet. They usually live between 4 to 8 years with females growing to about 5 inches in length and males slightly shorter about 3.5 inches.




We would recommend a tall enclosure for these guys. Though fully grown they are smaller in size than most species of tarantulas these guys love climbing and having a birds eye view. I personally like the tall exo-terra terrariums as I feel its perfect for these guys. They are small so you would not need anything bigger then maybe a square foot in surface area and a foot and a half in height. Make sure you have plenty of plants for it to climb on as well as round cork bark. These animals are very active at times and you might see the enclosure covered in extensive web tubes within days. These tarantulas can also be kept in groups (communally) though we do not recommend it. You can indeed have multiple at a time in your enclosure but please note they do tend to cannibalize each other should they feel overcrowded. The pinktoe tarantula loves damp and breezy environments, they come from the wet and windy forests of Costa Rica, Venezuela and Brazil so make sure your terrarium has a humidity level between 78% to 85%. Normal room temperature should be enough for these guys but do not let it drop lower then 75 degrees. A water dish should always be available.



In the wild the Pinktoe tarantula typically eat insects and other arthropods but in captivity crickets do the trick just fine. They are not picky eaters but their feeding approach is quite different. They remain in a frozen state not moving for hours at a time until their food of choice comes up towards them in which they will strike in the blink of an eye. Your pinktoe does not have a limit as too how much it eats. Mine ate a cricket a day for three whole weeks once. The more you feed it the faster and bigger it grows.



This species is not known to being aggressive at all. When threatened most pinktoes will either jump and run away not wanting to fight at all. On occasion they will launch a stream of excrement (poo) when they feel threatened. Adults have great aim and have a range of up to 4 feet away. This can surely ruin that nice shirt you decided to wear. Their bite though venomous to insects is nothing more then a bee sting to humans.  They rarely get provoked to attack in such manner but always test and see if your tarantula is in the mood to be handled before taking it out.


All in all the Pinktoe Tarantula is a great tarantula to have as a pet. They are not aggressive what so ever and are very active. Though you should handle with care due to its speed and leaps. This is more of a tarantula for someone that has already had a tarantula before.