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Building our T a castle

Discussion in 'Tarantula Enclosures' started by Bubbles, Feb 28, 2018.

  1. Bubbles

    Bubbles Member

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    My son and i recently got a Mexican red knee, and i was wondering what would this species consider heaven???.
    Currently bubbles is in a 5"x4"x2" enclosire that he came in from The shop. halve his enclosure is on a heat mat at around 21deg C. He has a piece of wood and a couple leaves.
    Ooohhh bubbles is around 2" across.
  2. MassExodus

    MassExodus Well-Known Member 1,000+ Post Club

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    Either dry coco fiber or excavator clay would be ideal. Provide a hide, maybe some rocks and fake plants as cover, and a water dish, and you'll have one very happy spider. :)
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  3. Whitelightning777

    Whitelightning777 Well-Known Member 1,000+ Post Club

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    Yikes!!

    You can use a heat mat, but no heat source should be below the tarantula. It should be to the side or higher, never under the substrate.

    If the heat source is below the tarantula, and they get hot, they always go down and dark...regardless of temperature as they descend. This can be fatal!!

    In nature, they go up and light when cold and down and dark when hot.

    Again, what I'm about to post is strictly what I've encountered in my research. I omitted the back story on tests with feeders and 3 wild wolf spiders who were returned to nature well fed and unharmed.



    Many can survive at room temperature without heat. Do pay attention to the drawbacks as well as the techniques and advantages.

    -----------

    Do remember, you do NOT have to add heat BUT the advantages of doing so are substantial.

    -----------

    Individually heating cages or just a small number on a shelf is only suited to small collections, typically under 10 enclosures. It takes 10 times longer to explain then to perform.

    Every one of my inverts is temp controlled to an average of 80 degrees. These include tarantulas and 2 scorpions. All are doing just fine.
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  4. Arachnoclown

    Arachnoclown Well-Known Member

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    I keep my hammori's in 8x8x8 exoterra enclosures with a water dish and cave. A few fake plants are great for somewhere to hide and hunt. Any decor works, corkbark, rocks, a stick or two, leaves and moss. Ditch the heat mat though...I keep mine at room temperature 68-75 degrees. This species is very tolerant to cool temps so heat is not required(they hunt in the wild in the mid to low 50s). They like dry substrate, I overflow the water dish weekly but they would rather I didn't. They do drink alot. I start them in their adult home a 8x8x8 around 3". You could go bigger at 6" if you want. That will be a few years down the road due the their slow growth rate. 20180303_101040.jpg This is a 5" female in her 8x8x8 enclosure...plenty of room.
  5. Whitelightning777

    Whitelightning777 Well-Known Member 1,000+ Post Club

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    They make a nice well ventilated cage. I'm very satisfied with my nano 8x8x12.
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  6. PanzoN88

    PanzoN88 Well-Known Member

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    I house my B. hamorii in a sterilite bin filled with coco fiber and a water dish. The only heating comes from the central heating in my bedroom (well it is the computer room, I just like to sleep in there).
  7. Bubbles

    Bubbles Member

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    Thanks for the advice all, I've turned the heat mat down now, last i checked it's 20 deg c inside the enclosure, obviously i only have the mat under one halve.
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  8. Dave Jay

    Dave Jay Well-Known Member

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    It is best to place a heat matt on the side or end of an enclosure rather than under it as an animals natural instinct is to burrow to escape hot dry conditions, in the case of a heat mat under an enclosure malfunctioning this instinct can lead to death.
    Edit, I realised just now that whitelightning had already stated this, but it can't hurt to say it twice!
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2018
  9. Bubbles

    Bubbles Member

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    Ok I'm currently watching the thermometer closely, I've moved the heat mat to the warm end Of bubbles enclosure and fingers crossed it seems to be staying at 70f.
  10. Bubbles

    Bubbles Member

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  11. Bubbles

    Bubbles Member

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    So do B Harmorii like to burrow? Currently the substrate is about 3/4 of an inch. Next time he molts i was planning on putting him in a larger enclosure, I've got a new 10x8x3 which is quite a shallow enclosure, so realistically is it suitable our should i have gone for a more square one like your fore mentioned 8x8x8?
  12. Entity

    Entity Well-Known Member 3 Year Member 1,000+ Post Club

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    Lots of substrate. sometimes they like to burrow but as they get bigger they tend to do it less. But you want lots of substrate so if they climb the side the fall is not very high. Also I see you have some dampness in the enclosure there. All he needs is a water bowl. They live in dry climates, and do not like wet substrate. :)
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  13. Arachnoclown

    Arachnoclown Well-Known Member

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    In the 8x8x8's I use around 3" of substrate. As you can see in the photo they dig down a little bit but the cave style hide is what I find they like alot. You can use anything to house them...its totally up to you and what you want. I prefer glass enclosures for my breeding stock and cheap plastic encloures or do it yourself encloures for my slings and male trade and loaners. 20180304_110838.jpg
    Also if your worried about humidity... don't. My humidity in my house is in the low 40% high 30% on average. Make sure you keep them dry.
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2018
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  14. Bubbles

    Bubbles Member

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    Thank you both very much, ill try to dry out the halve, some how? I take it you sorta constructed the cave from like a piece of bark sank into a bit of a hollow, and your T just found it and liked it,? bubbles enclosure is 22c one end and 18c the wet end.
  15. Whitelightning777

    Whitelightning777 Well-Known Member 1,000+ Post Club

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    Your heat gradient needs to be top hot, bottom cold. No matter what the average temp is, they behave improperly when the heat is under them. Even if there isn't a fatal amount of heat, they will burrow down to the source and never emerge again until it is disconnected.

    They also react ok when the temp varies horizontally.

    Some people can get away with going underneath arboreal species, but only because they don't burrow.

    In my opinion, if you can't move the mat underneath due to adhesion, unplug it and get another one and attach it to either the right or left side as high as possible so the top of the pad is underneath the bottom of the frame.


    The gradient is just as important as the temp and hydration.

    The heat source needs to be level with or higher then the spider. Putting to the source underneath creates many of the injuries and fatalities that occur.
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  16. PanzoN88

    PanzoN88 Well-Known Member

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    Some Psalmopoeus Sp. burrow from what I've heard.
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  17. Whitelightning777

    Whitelightning777 Well-Known Member 1,000+ Post Club

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    The slings probably do, which means never put them underneath the substrate!! After all, unless you're standing on a volcano, nature doesn't work that way.
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  18. Entity

    Entity Well-Known Member 3 Year Member 1,000+ Post Club

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    My P. Irimina burrows a lot. has a labyrinth of tunnels made from cocofiber and web. pretty bad ass.
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  19. ALD

    ALD Active Member

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    My B. Hamorii does not burrow but she likes to move dirt around and make little pits. She fills them back in again pushing the substrate around. It's cute. Its like her job.
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