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deceased specimen donations for private research?

Discussion in 'Tarantula Breeding' started by Ray, Dec 20, 2016.

  1. Ray

    Ray New Member

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    Hey guys post is a little creepy I know but its for a good cause. First off I am new to owning Ts however the world of insects and invertebrates is nothing new to me, as well the realm of physics and genetics. I am currently embarking on an adventure into an uncharted territory in search of a sustainable method for artificial insemination of Ts. Being a new owner I will not foolishly rush into buying a mature couple and haphazardly conduct basement experiments. My goal is to gather as much knowledge on the subject as possible with minimal actual research and planned attempts my sources are lacking. I am requesting for the community female T subjects for dissection and study with intent to uncover as much of the reproduction secrets as possible from. All studies will be video updated and the owner or breeder mentioned as well as a little history of your deceased loved one. I will not except live specimens. However remnants of sperm webs or sperm webs with sperm intact would do wonders for my studies on the haploid sperm cells behavior and count of sperm per species. If you have any questions feel free to contact me
  2. Thistles

    Thistles Well-Known Member

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    Hey, I saw your post on AB and was going to comment, but it went where dramafests inevitably end up.

    Good news: female reproductive organs are among what is shed when she molts. That's how using an exuvia to sex a tarantula works. You don't need dead specimens to examine all the parts that deal with fertilization, although she does not shed the deeper structures like ovaries. Basically, she stores sperm in her spermathecae until she lays her eggs, at which time they are fertilized. If I'm not mistaken, it still is unknown if they are fertilized as they are laid or if she ejects some of the sperm into the jelly surrounding freshly laid eggs and they are fertilized as they absorb the fluid.

    I highly doubt you will find sperm available on sperm webs. The males generally destroy them when they're done with them. I have tons of shreds, but have only occasionally caught a male in the act (maybe a dozen times, tops).

    I believe that artificial insemination is possible, but that it won't benefit breeding significantly. With the exception of bitchy GBBs and their ilk, pairing is the easy part of tarantula breeding. Inducing a female to drop a sac is the hard part!

    Anecdotally (and oh man, will I be judged for this!) I have a female OBT that ate a male and tried to eat a second one. When she was crunching the first male, one of his pedipalps came off. "Hmm," says I, "this is the important part." She was occupied with a mouthful of unfortunate suitor, so I used a spoon to put her on her back (still with her mouth full, or she would never have let me get away with it) and inserted the tip of the embolus. Then I realized that I couldn't forcibly inject the sperm, and gave up. That's my story of dallying with tarantula rape. In my defense, she only told HIM no, and she was definitely asking for it at first. It ended up not being necessary because MM #2 is a total stud and got the job done. He's also 1 year mature today, so happy birthday to grumpy gramps.
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  3. Phil

    Phil Well-Known Member 1,000+ Post Club

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    We don't judge on this forum. ☺
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  4. Thistles

    Thistles Well-Known Member

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    Speak for yourself. I know someone's gonna call me out for molesting my man-eater necrophile-style.

    I don't know if you remember that funny video I posted of my female OBT throwing a male, but those are the two spiders in question.
  5. Phil

    Phil Well-Known Member 1,000+ Post Club

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    I actually thought it was a really entertaining post (speaking for myself naturally) o_O
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  6. MassExodus

    MassExodus Well-Known Member 1,000+ Post Club

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    My god what have you done Thistles? Tarantula rape is a growing concern in the hobby everyone, don't be like Thistles and and spoon with your spiders..What have you done? Ohhh the humanity..*sob*
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  7. Metalman2004

    Metalman2004 Active Member

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    Interesting you say that, my last B Smithi when he matured made sperm webs in front of me every friday morning around the same time 4 weeks in a row before I traded him. I have some video I'd be happy to share if you and Ray are interested.

    It did help that his enclosure was sitting on my work desk so it was easy for me to catch it.
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  8. Ray

    Ray New Member

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  9. Ray

    Ray New Member

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  10. Thistles

    Thistles Well-Known Member

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    I don't know what you're asking regarding a female's durability, so I can't help you there. As far as size goes, every individual female will be slightly different, and there is tremendous variation across species in the size and shape of spermathecae, with some species lacking them altogether, if I understand your question correctly.

    As for egg laying, some females will lay phantom sacs regardless of whether they've mated. The eggs are fertilized as or soon after they are laid, so they develop more or less independently of insemination. A female can theoretically lay fertile eggs immediately after mating if she already had them made and was preparing to lay an infertile phantom sac. Some species are more prone to this than others. I suspect that pairing is an important initial trigger for egg production in many/most species, but not enough is known about it. For many species there are a number of different triggers, from seasonal change making her receptive to pairing, to food abundance and more seasonal change to stimulate her to lay the eggs. It's complicated.

    That's a neat observation about your smithi, @Metalman2004. I've caught some of my boys at it, and even filmed one, but it isn't an everyday sighting even though I have maybe 2 dozen MMs at the moment. Maybe he was just an exhibitionist!
  11. Metalman2004

    Metalman2004 Active Member

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    Cirst time posting pictures this way on a forum so we'll see if it works. First picture shows him weaving the web. Then he somehow flips on his back and creates a sort of tunnel type web. It was very fascinating to watch.

    Attached Files:

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  12. Metalman2004

    Metalman2004 Active Member

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    Here is a video of him on his back webbing up a storm. Its some weird looking stuff.

    Last edited: Dec 22, 2016
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  13. Metalman2004

    Metalman2004 Active Member

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    The following is rated NC17. Viewer discretion is advised.

    After he was done spinning the web he got on top and started doing what I can only describe as...well just look for yourself.

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  14. Thistles

    Thistles Well-Known Member

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    Great images and video! You did a great job capturing that!
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  15. Metalman2004

    Metalman2004 Active Member

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    Thanks. I think you are right, he was an exhibitionist. I also have some really good video of him molting. I may start a different thread to share.
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  16. Ray

    Ray New Member

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    do you think we could separate the t after he does the sperm web and extract the web and preserve the sperm?
  17. Ray

    Ray New Member

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    ok guys so today was the first day of my roommate giving me my t. he bought it at Petco and I know the care is very ill reviewed.......but I haven't seen something online about the type of feeding I saw..theres no remains h literally ate the exoskeleton of his cricket over the course of about 5 and a half hours zero remains.....ive been simulating wet season in the terrarium to boost growth and he took a second cricket the minute he was done with the first... my only assumption is Petco starves these little guys
  18. Ray

    Ray New Member

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    I deff subscribed to your channel
  19. Ray

    Ray New Member

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    update I decided to let a third cricket into the enclose to let him know food is abundant in the environment he is now in if he doesn't take in in an hour I will remove it.. .... he handles beautifully, no hairs docile he seems to have really cheered up since being introduce to a wet season... when I first got him he wouldn't touch the floor(my only assumption being that he grew accustomed to the uncomfortable artificial foam bedding Petco provides)...with the second cricket he placed it at the bottom of his skull for about 20 minutes... when I came to give him the calculated wind factor the cricket was back in his/her jaws....my observation of sex is inconclusive but I assume it is male
  20. Metalman2004

    Metalman2004 Active Member

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    In theory maybe. In practice good luck...it would be pretty tough.

    Unfortunately I would say the lengths you would have to go through to do this and the failures leading up to the eventual success would border on cruelty.
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