Mike's Basic Tarantula
A Basic Site for the Tarantula enthusiast
Phormictopus cautus
Common name: Cuban Purple
Indigenous: Cuba
Habitat: Cuba’s geographical expanse and the varieties of mountain ranges, savannas, caves, swamps, beaches, and tropical rain forests produce microclimates, small regions that exhibit differing temperatures, rainfalls, soil conditions, wildlife, and vegetation. The climate of Cuba is semitropical, the mean annual temperature being 25°C (77°F). The temperature ranges from an average of 23°C (73°F) in January to an average of 28°C (82°F) in August. The heat and high relative humidity (80 percent) of the summer season are tempered by the prevailing northeastern trade winds. The annual rainfall averages 1,320 mm (52 in). More than 60 percent of the rain falls during the wet season, which extends from May to October.
Temp/humidity: 76°-82°F degrees/70-80% humidity
Enclosure: This is a opportunistic burrower. As a spiderling, I used a vial that would allow at least three inches (3") of substrate for burrowing. As sub-adult-adults, I use a terrarium that will allow at least four inches (4") of substrate
Substrate: I use four inches of substrate. (I use a mixture of peat moss, vermiculite, coconut fiber and dirt for firmness, as the substrate).
Retreat/Hide: Place a bark for a starter burrow hide
Food Consumption: I fed my new born spiderlings fruit flies, than when they reached 1/2", I introduced baby crickets. My sub-adult Cuban Purple, I give one (1) one inch B. dubia roaches or 5 adult crickets weekly. This species is a good eater, and attack its prey with a vengeance. I also give her one pinkie-mouse or a house gecko once a year for variety.
Water Requirements: I keep a water dish in the tank. I have never seen mine drink, and it always fill the water dish with substrate. I also dampen one-half (1/2) of the substrate in the terrarium by overflowing the water dish. Then I allow it to dry out.
Growth Rate: The growth rate for this species is medium-fast. With proper heating and feeding it may attain a leg length of four inches.
Adult Size: This species may attain a leg length of seven (7) to eight (8) inches
Temperament: This is a bold and aggressive tarantula as an adult. It will use a defensive pose to indicate don't touch; she will stand her ground and fight. She has never kicked hair at me.
Comments: This is a beautiful purple tarantula. I have yet to capture  the true color of this species on camera. She is an aggressive eating T that has never refused a meal unless near a molt. This is a fairly new tarantula in the Hobby. As spiderlings, they have a midnite purplish sheen in direct sun light. It is also a good display species as sub/adults.
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