Mike's Basic Tarantula
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Indigenous: Trinidad (West Indies)
Habitat: Trinidad is hot and humid with a maximum temperature of around 30°C. The islands of have a tropical climate due to their location in the Caribbean close to the Equator, characterised by long periods of hot weather with heavy rainfall at certain times of year. The dry season is between January and May, while the wet season runs from June to December. Minimum temperatures are usually around 20°C and humidity levels are an average of 75%.
Temp/humidity: This species does well at 76° to 82°F (23.3°C to 27.8°C) and 60% humidity
Enclosure: This is an opportunistic burrower that will web its entire enclosure an adult needs three inches (3") of substrate to burrow.
Substrate: I use one inches (2.54cm) of substrate in vial, deli cup for spiderlings, and three inches (7.62cm) in a terrarium for sub-adult to adult. (I use a mixture of peat moss, vermiculite, coconut fiber and dirt for firmness, as the substrate). This species will use the substrate to make the elaborate tunnels out of webbing.
Retreat/Hide: This species does need several hides for the purpose of attaching its web; it will make a network of tunnels from webbing .
Food Consumption: I first fed fruit flies, than when she reached one-half inch (1.27cm) I introduced baby crickets. Now I give my adult Trinidad Olive (1) - inch B. dubia roaches or two (2) adult crickets weekly. This species is a good eater.
Water Requirements: This is one of the few species of tarantulas that I don't keep a reservoir in the tank. I keep the substrate in the terrarium dry. Every month I mist the webbed structure, than allow it to dry out. I have seen them drink from the drops attached to the webbing.
Growth Rate: The growth rate of this species is medium. I purchased these tarantulas as spiderlings of one-fourth inch (.635cm) in size. After the first year they had grown to about one inch (2.54cm). With constant feeding and with temperatures in the low 80's, it reached a size of three inches (7.62cm) within three years.
Adult Size: I read that they get three inches (7.62cm) leg length. My girl is a solid 2-1/2" (6.35cm).
Temperament: Because of their skittish nature, they aren't the best species to handle. If approached they will usually go into a threat posture, but is usuallly a bluff, their best defense is to flee. Comments: The Trinidad Olive is a small tarantula, but I don't consider it to be a dwarf species. It is a prolific webber and will web up the entire cage, making web tunnels. This is one of the few tarantulas that are communal in nature. They can be observed feeding together. I think everyone should have a communal setup to observe the unique behavior of tarantulas living together. The only drawback with having a communal setup is, you may end up with a hundred tarantulas, quick.
This is also a beautiful species and easy to care for. I consider this as a beginner tarantula.