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Is my tarantula in pre molt?

SpiderSteve

New Member
So I recently picked up a Brachypelma Hamorii from my local pet store. It has a big bald spot on its abdomen, which I think can be a sign of being in pre molt, but it was also flicking a lot of hairs the day I got it, which can cause the bald spot I know too.

The pet store, I've come to understand after doing a lot of my own research after getting my first tarantula, is actually pretty clueless when it comes to taking care of these things. It's actually sad when I see the conditions in which some are kept. When I got my b hamorii, the substrate was beyond wet. There was no hide, and hardly a water dish. The point I'm making is that this was definitely one stressed out T, because the first week I had it, it drank water like crazy. I upgraded him to a more fitting habitat after a week, and during the process it was much more calm and not even flicking hairs, completely unlike its behavior the day I got it (the lady even reached into the habitat to "give it a pet one last time" as the T is visibly being defensive and freaking out).

Now my real question/concern here is - the day I got it, about 3 or 4 weeks ago, the lady said it at 5 crickets the day before. Which seems to be a lot I think if this T is in pre molt? However, it refuses food whenever I try to feed it, but I'm not sure if I should even be trying to feed it. My only other T hasn't even molted in my possession yet and is on a nice one a week feeding schedule of 1-3 crickets or a super worm. I don't know if my b hamorii was just stressed from being at a not very good pet store for tarantulas and I should start trying to find a feeding schedule, or if it is in fact in pre molt and I should just leave it alone and make sure it has water and all that.

Sorry for the long post, I'll include some pictures here. I have no idea how old it may be.
 

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FishermanSteve

Well-Known Member
3 Year Member
So I recently picked up a Brachypelma Hamorii from my local pet store. It has a big bald spot on its abdomen, which I think can be a sign of being in pre molt, but it was also flicking a lot of hairs the day I got it, which can cause the bald spot I know too.

The pet store, I've come to understand after doing a lot of my own research after getting my first tarantula, is actually pretty clueless when it comes to taking care of these things. It's actually sad when I see the conditions in which some are kept. When I got my b hamorii, the substrate was beyond wet. There was no hide, and hardly a water dish. The point I'm making is that this was definitely one stressed out T, because the first week I had it, it drank water like crazy. I upgraded him to a more fitting habitat after a week, and during the process it was much more calm and not even flicking hairs, completely unlike its behavior the day I got it (the lady even reached into the habitat to "give it a pet one last time" as the T is visibly being defensive and freaking out).

Now my real question/concern here is - the day I got it, about 3 or 4 weeks ago, the lady said it at 5 crickets the day before. Which seems to be a lot I think if this T is in pre molt? However, it refuses food whenever I try to feed it, but I'm not sure if I should even be trying to feed it. My only other T hasn't even molted in my possession yet and is on a nice one a week feeding schedule of 1-3 crickets or a super worm. I don't know if my b hamorii was just stressed from being at a not very good pet store for tarantulas and I should start trying to find a feeding schedule, or if it is in fact in pre molt and I should just leave it alone and make sure it has water and all that.

Sorry for the long post, I'll include some pictures here. I have no idea how old it may be.
Definitely looks like a B. auratum to me, which is good news because they are more expensive! That big peach bald spot will turn completely black in premolt so you can rule that out. I would try and feed her once a week possibly once every 2 weeks if she keeps refusing food. She looks incredibly healthy and I don’t think you have anything to worry about!
 

ilovebrachys

Well-Known Member
Hi after looking at you pics I can see that you have a brachypelma auratum and not a hamorii--care is exactly the same.. As I can tell you are keen to provide the T with the correct environment as for the feeding I wouldn't worry about it not eating at the moment as brachys fast on a regular basis and can go long periods with out eating.. Of course still offer prey items but remove them if the T doesn't eat :) as I was writing this I see @FishermanSteve just posted before me.. Good advice from him :)
 

FishermanSteve

Well-Known Member
3 Year Member
Hi after looking at you pics I can see that you have a brachypelma auratum and not a hamorii--care is exactly the same.. As I can tell you are keen to provide the T with the correct environment as for the feeding I wouldn't worry about it not eating at the moment as brachys fast on a regular basis and can go long periods with out eating.. Of course still offer prey items but remove them if the T doesn't eat :) as I was writing this I see @FishermanSteve just posted before me.. Good advice from him :)
Great minds think alike! ;)
 

Brachyfan

Well-Known Member
Premium Member
I was gonna say....looks like an auratum to me. Absolutely gorgeous! Congrats! They are actually my favorite looking Brachypelma species. My auratum Jabba is very calm too.

Hair kicking is not a sign of premolt. I see this a lot and don't know where people read this stuff (no offense meant). It just means they are kicking hairs. This could be because the spider is stressed or sometimes they just kick hairs to line their burrows (enclosure) to protect it from predators. This is the same reason my T albopilosum shreds up it's moults and lines it's burrow. Totally hillarious when it is getting ready to moult and cleans it's burrow out. I will usually find a pile of legs and a bolus or two waiting for me in front of the entrance.

If the tarantula is refusing food that is a sign that it may moult soon. Not necessarily in pre moult. But headed there. It could take some time before it moults. The bald spot will turn completely black and then you know it will happen soon. Just make sure the spider has lots of water.

I think your spider is stuffed from all those crickets. They can fast for a looonnnggg time. They can only eat so much and then don't need any more food. Especially Brachys and Grammastolas. I have tiny slings that haven't eaten in 6 months. These ones get fed once a week and if they turn it down several times I go to an attempt every 2 weeks. If they still refuse I will try maybe once a month. And eventually I will just stop trying as in the case of my tiny Eupalaestrus campestratus that fasted for almost 6 months. Just make sure it has fresh water available at all times and you should be good. :)
 
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