Other common names: Mexican Blonde Tarantula, Arizona Blonde Tarantula, Western Blonde Tarantula
Scientific name: Aphonopelma chalcodes
The Desert Blonde Tarantula is a terrestrial burrower from the desert soil regions of the southern United States of Arizona, New Mexico, and Southern California. These tarantulas like to burrow under rocks, tree roots, or even overtaking burrows belonging to rodents.
Appearance / health:
Desert Blonde’s are a decent sized tarantula with some reaching up to 6 inches. Like their name suggests, these tarantulas are covered in pale hairs making up most of the body. The legs and abdomen are a dark brown or black color. Females are primarily the pale color. These are a slow growing species so they have very long life spans.
Behavior / temperament:
These are slightly more aggressive than most beginner species, but have also been known to be quite docile. These can be used as a beginner species. They will throw threat postures if scared and if provoked enough will flick the hair off its abdomen.
A 5-10 gallon tank will be big enough for an adult, but spiderlings and young tarantulas can live in a clear plastic container. Floor space and depth is more important than climbing height.
These tarantulas come from a desert like habitat and the captive habitat should mimic that. Temperatures should be around 75-80F with humidity levels of 60-70%. Substrate can be a mixture of sand and potting soil or vermiculite. The substrate should be kept moist but not overly wet, just enough to form burrows. Tank décor to add can be things like cork bark, sideways plant pots for a retreat, and other stuff. For the most part, this tarantula will burrow under these items. A shallow wide water dish may be supplied and cleaned frequently.
Insects primarily make up the diet of Desert Blondes. Crickets, cockroaches, super worms and other insects can be fed. Larger adult specimens may get an occasional pinkie mouse.
The male should be introduced to the female after he makes a sperm web. If the female is accepting they will begin the mating ritual. If the female is not accepting the male will pursue her anyway. When mating the male will grab a hold of the females fangs and will position her to an upright position where he will then try to inject his fertilizing fluid into her. If successful, the female will make an egg sac 6-7 weeks later.
good looking, calm tarantula, care requirements, mild tempered tarantula, beginners
reasonable price., new world tarantula, desert regions
A Guide to your friendly neighborhood Aphonopelma chalcodes
As a youth I was fearful of spiders almost in a phobia worthy manner.
In typical fashion when I fear something I am used to facing that fear so when I saw this beautiful lady for sale by a pet store breeder I scraped together my allowance and made the purchase post haste.
I will admit it took me over a week to gather the necessary courage to hold Shelob for the first time and I might have ran away and hid after the first few attempts. But low and behold the world did not end, I was not gravely wounded and slowly my confidence did rise. Within a month we were the best of pals and I had soundly overcome my childhood fear of all spider kind.
On the plus side this variety of spider is magnificent. I soaked a sponge once a week and put it in her habitat. Once every two weeks I would purchase some variety of insect and watch her feast. This was very enjoyable in my youth as you can imagine my own version of animal kingdom. Another huge plus was always having something interesting to show my friends and girls. I found Shelob grew on most people very quickly as she was not prone to quick movements and she actually enjoyed being stroked. She was literally never sick in the 20 years I had her until her passing. I loved her so much I purchased a second soon afterwards and named her Charlotte.
On the negative side this breed of spider will occasionally fling some hairs at people it is not used to. This was rare however and is literally the only negative I ever encountered with this breed..
From Pyrenees May 9 2014 6:11PM
A good tarantula for beginners
This tarantula is a pretty good pick for people starting out or who are already into the hobby. They aren't generally aggressive unless you sweep your hand quickly towards their face and can even be handled on occasion. They have a healthy appetite and like with most tarantulas are very fun to watch hunt. They should have a hide in their habitat as they sometimes like to just keep to themselves. Other times though, you'll see them walking around exploring their environment. They aren't flighty either which is a plus for those who like to handle their tarantulas. They are very easy to maintain since they come from desert regions and therefore don't need to be misted or have vegetation in their habitat for comfort. I recommend the species to anyone who is into tarantulas!.
From DennisNJ May 11 2015 11:42PM
Tim: The Pet Rock
I really wish I could say that my pet spider was a cool pet, but he shared more in common with a rock than animal. I had always pictured a caged tarantula as a dark and dreary pet who would feed in all kinds of creepy ways, but no Tim just kind of sat-then he sat more. I'm not sure when he ate, because I never saw him do so. Now, this did make him the easiest pet to maintain, and the low upkeep worked great with my fast paced life. So, if you want a pet that takes little no effort, and therefore little to no reward, this tarantula is perfect for you..
From dlandes2 May 27 2015 11:32AM