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M Balfouri Assistance

Taraspatula

Member
Hi y’all, sorry to bother again but I just recently went to Repticon San Bernardino, CA and picked up some Balfouri slings unsexed. I bought two of them so they be friends.

I currently have them in an exoterra mini enclosure. I know that they are terrestrials and this is more of an arboreal set up but I will change their enclosure when they grow.

Here are my questions:

How do I know when I should separate them? Or will they always be friendly towards each other?

1389E79D-45A3-46F5-B9C7-73CB8BDEC105.jpeg


One is at the bottom left corner (brown and smaller) and the other one you can spot the blue legs at the base of the log making a burrow.
 

ilovebrachys

Well-Known Member
Congrats on the new additions:) I have a colony of 5 M.Balfouri slings- I can say I have never had an issue with them living communally -they do like to web up things on the ground so it would be good if you could put some bark and plants at ground level so they can do so would be good-hope that helps:)
 

MrKrowe

Well-Known Member
Conventional wisdom for communal slings is that you give them as little space as possible so that they remain in contact with one another and don’t create an area which they have to defend. M.balfouri do seem to gravitate toward one another so you might not have this issue, but when you are talking about slings smaller is always better. Easier to manage, easier to find food, easier to hydrate ... just easier. If you have very small slings then the maximum size container you use should be a 16oz deli cup.

Just to qualify this, I have a four piece communal (and also a M/F pair for breeding). From my observations this species thrives in a communal setting.
 

Taraspatula

Member
Congrats on the new additions:) I have a colony of 5 M.Balfouri slings- I can say I have never had an issue with them living communally -they do like to web up things on the ground so it would be good if you could put some bark and plants at ground level so they can do so would be good-hope that helps:)
Conventional wisdom for communal slings is that you give them as little space as possible so that they remain in contact with one another and don’t create an area which they have to defend. M.balfouri do seem to gravitate toward one another so you might not have this issue, but when you are talking about slings smaller is always better. Easier to manage, easier to find food, easier to hydrate ... just easier. If you have very small slings then the maximum size container you use should be a 16oz deli cup.

Just to qualify this, I have a four piece communal (and also a M/F pair for breeding). From my observations this species thrives in a communal setting.
@ilovebrachys That definitely helps out, I was contemplating of more things ground level

@MrKrowe Im currently using the Exo Terra Nano Tall (8X8X12) and have 2 slings. How many more could possibly for their current enclosure?
 

Taraspatula

Member
@Taraspatula If they’re the same size as the ones in your pic I would say you could support around four in total.
@MrKrowe sweet just bought out two in there I’ll update with pictures when they are settled! One of the two I bought yesterday grabbed 2 crickets and ate instantly. When I told the person at the booth about that he was surprised that they ate and adjusted so quickly. Also, one of them seems to have lighter hairs and brown legs, what does that mean? Sex?

Do they share the feed?
 

MrKrowe

Well-Known Member
@MrKrowe sweet just bought out two in there I’ll update with pictures when they are settled! One of the two I bought yesterday grabbed 2 crickets and ate instantly. When I told the person at the booth about that he was surprised that they ate and adjusted so quickly. Also, one of them seems to have lighter hairs and brown legs, what does that mean? Sex?

Do they share the feed?
I have't noticed any sexual dimorphism, certainly not in slings.

They do share food, and they seem to seek out one another when resting. You are in for an incredible experience. Not only are they striking creatures, their behaviour is fascinating.

Tom Moran from TomsBigSpiders has some excellent information on YouTube. This is a pretty good place to start ...

https://tomsbigspiders.com/2014/07/15/monocentropus-balfouri-care-husbandry/
 

spodermin

Well-Known Member
I have 4 balfouri slings and after reading this I'm contemplating putting them in a communal enclosure. Is it too late if they are about 1.5" already? One of them is slightly bigger too by almost a quarter inch
 

spodermin

Well-Known Member
Communal setups are something I've researched but only in the context of sac mates from birth, never by putting multiple juvenile spiders in one enclosure
 

MrKrowe

Well-Known Member
I have 4 balfouri slings and after reading this I'm contemplating putting them in a communal enclosure. Is it too late if they are about 1.5" already? One of them is slightly bigger too by almost a quarter inch
I'm going to go with the politician's stance and say that would be up to you. I have no experience of putting non-sacmates together or individuals who have been separated previously (apart from in the post), but I have read that balfouri do tolerate individuals of different sizes from different sacs and bloodlines - they just seem to be very tolerant of their own kind in general, just wish I could remember where I read it.

A lot of dealers do deals on balfouri because of their now legendary communal capabilities, it's possible in the UK to get 10 for £100. I would rather pay the money and start a fresh communal than risk my little preciouses.
 

Tortoise Tom

Well-Known Member
1,000+ Post Club
This is a subject of interest for me, as I have one of these, but would love to have more and do a communal. I appreciate all the first hand, experience based advice and info here. Thanks to all.
 

Taraspatula

Member
This is a subject of interest for me, as I have one of these, but would love to have more and do a communal. I appreciate all the first hand, experience based advice and info here. Thanks to all.
Exactly what @MrKrowe, the guys I bought were from the same vendor at repticon but I forgot to ask if they were sacmates. I just assumed due to them being same size and he had about 8 of them. I wished I had enough monies to have bought all of them.
 

Taraspatula

Member
UPDATE: Unfortunate news... first loss, my suspected female ate one of the suspected males! It definitely has to do with territory because I fed them so many crickets and they ate them all.

The female created her webbing in the log and I guess a male tried to enter and just got killed. I’m suspecting that’s what happened because all I saw was her munching on him. I separated the suspected female. IM SO DEVASTATED.

Top image: Have chewed on suspected male
Bottom image: Suspected female compared to my G. Pulchra

144E308E-A3E7-497C-87FE-4B4E94F0EA43.jpeg

3D05FE1F-17FF-44D0-9306-6370E8DEB656.jpeg
 

MrKrowe

Well-Known Member
Bummer. Thanks for reporting it. First hand experience is great to have but not when it’s like this.
 

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