Pink Toe Tarantula
FOR THE MONTH OF OCTOBER, $4.99/spiderlings, WHILE SUPPLIES LAST.
We believe that an animal’s cage should be a thing of beauty, and something of a showpiece for whatever room it is to be kept. In fact, one of our favorite things about keeping exotic animals is designing and maintaining beautiful naturalistic habitats for our pets. It gives us the satisfaction of providing our animals with an ideal environment, is a great creative outlet, and allows us to bring a small piece of the natural world into our homes. So it can be frustrating when the majority of animals we sell make it difficult to keep the lovely cages we provided them in the picture perfect state we wish them to stay.
Fortunately, there are a few pets that we sell that will not only tread very lightly and have almost no detrimental impact on their environments, but will actually put great effort into making their terrariums even more beautiful than what we could have created ourselves. The pets we are speaking of are arboreal tarantulas. These guys build extensive web tubes and tunnels that are as beautiful as they are fascinating to watch being built! So we are all very excited that October’s Animal of the Month is one of our favorite arboreal tarantulas, the Pink Toe Tarantula, (Avicularia avicularia.)
This is a new world tarantula species, found in the wild throughout the Amazon Basin in northern South America up through the lower Central American countries. They build their webs in trees and other tall plants where they will patiently wait, always ready to ambush prey animals that wander a little too close. Pink Toes are medium sized tarantulas, with adults typically reaching a total length of about 5”. Like all tarantulas, they are carnivorous, and primarily eat insects, but will happily eat small mammals or reptiles if/when given the opportunity.
Scales ‘N Tails highly recommends Pink Toe Tarantulas as we believe they make great pets for beginners and experts alike. They are absolutely gorgeous animals, with dark furry bodies, and long, deep violet legs that are highlighted by the light pink toes for which the species is named. Pink Toes are aggressive feeders and typically very hardy when kept in captivity. Just like all tarantulas, they are venomous, but Pink Toes typically have a very docile nature and are much more likely to run or jump than they are to bite when they feel threatened. Like other arboreal tarantulas, they are fast, agile, and exceptional jumpers, so handling is only recommended for those who are very comfortable with large tarantulas. (All tarantulas are fragile, and falling to the ground can cause great harm to these animals.) A good rule of thumb for any tarantula that is acting defensive or frightened is to simply leave it alone.
Caring for a pet Pink Toe Tarantula
Caring for a pet Pink Toe Tarantula is straight forward, but tropical, arboreal tarantulas do have special needs. Baby Pink Toes are best kept in small plastic cups, with a height of at least 4”, and with a lid that allows airflow. When they reach a size of approximately 2”, we recommend moving them to a tall glass terrarium, with a height of at least 18”. (Zoo Med’s 12”x12”x18” Naturalistic Terrarium is perfect for adult Pink Toes.) Regardless of the what is used to house it, the environment inside the terrarium should be designed to meet the specific needs of these fascinating tarantulas.
While they will seldom be seen on the ground, coconut bedding or an appropriate tarantula soil should be used as a substrate, at a depth of about 2 inches, as moistening it will aid in maintaining the higher humidity levels necessary. Placing a few choice pieces of Cork Bark vertically will provide the animal with the arboreal environment it needs. While not a necessity, adding a live plant or two will also help maintain higher humidity levels, and they create a more naturalistic, and comfortable environment for your pet. With the right environment in place, it won’t take long for the Pink Toe to begin constructing it’s web somewhere near the top of the enclosure.
This is a hardy creature, that can absolutely tolerate general room temperature, but the ideal temperature range is between 78-82 degrees, so providing a supplemental heat source should be considered. Ideal humidity level should be around 60-75%, which can be achieved by simply misting the enclosure with a spray bottle. Spray enough water to dampen the enclosure and substrate, but not enough to completely soak it. Once it’s environmental needs have been met, simply provide your tarantula a few appropriately sized Dubia Roaches or Crickets weekly, and you’ll have a happy, healthy pet for years to come.
If you provide the right environment for your Pink Toe, then you’ll be able to enjoy your pet tarantula for a fairly long time. While they are not as slow growing and long lived as other tarantula species, Pink Toes do enjoy a lifespan of up to about 8 years.
Finally, we wouldn’t be doing our Animal of the Month justice if we didn’t make it an affordable pet option. So for the month of October, while supplies last, we will have baby Pink Toe Tarantulas available for the unbeatable price of $4.99! These little guys were recently born at our Ft. Collins store, and all of them are well started and doing great. So if you’re interested in a new pet tarantula, there has never been a better time to get one!