King Baboon Tarantula

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Other common names: King Baboon Spider

Scientific name: Pelinobius muticus

The basics:
The King Baboon Tarantula is a burrowing species that originates in Africa from the semi-arid or dry scrublands of Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. This species is commonly found in deep burrows at the base of trees and rock piles. Pelinobius muticus was formerly known as Citharischius crawshayi.

Appearance / health:
The coloration of these tarantulas ranges from a deep red to a bright brown color. They are covered in short hairs which also gives them a velvet-like look. Their size ranges from 7-9 inches depending on the sex. Females are always bigger than males as adults.

Behavior / temperament:
King Baboon Tarantulas are highly aggressive. They will attack almost anything, whether feeding tongs, fingers, or anything else that gets close to them. They also make a hissing noise when startled. Since this is an overly aggressive species, it should only be kept by experienced keepers; these are not recommended for beginners.

Young tarantulas and spiderlings may live in clear plastic containers and adults do best in a 10-20 gallon tank. Floor space and depth is more important than height since these are terrestrial burrowers.

Temperature of the tank should be between 75-90F with humidity levels of 70-80%. A deep substrate is needed for this tarantula and should be at the least 7 inches deep. A mixture of peat and vermiculite will do best as it holds humidity well as well as shape. The substrate should always be moist, but never sopping wet. It shouldn’t drip if squeezed, but shouldn’t blow away if you blow on it. No tank décor is really needed unless you provide plant pots half buried to provide a shelter, or other things to hide and burrow under. A wide shallow water dish will help raise humidity and should be changed frequently.

These tarantulas need a variety in their diet. The diet should include crickets, grasshoppers, locusts, cockroaches and other insects. Large aggressive adults may also get small mice and pinkies once or twice a month.

Breeding isn’t always recommended as the female is always aggressive to anything that comes near her burrow. If breeding, the male must be carefully introduced into the females enclosure after he has made a sperm web. Be careful though, if the female is not interested she will almost instantly attack the male. If she is accepting, mating will occur. Males are almost always eaten after mating to ensure the female has proper nutrition and health during pregnancy. If the mating was successful the female will then produce an egg sac within the next few weeks.


intermediate tarantula owner, huge rear legs, massive body, colours, impressive size, reddish brown


burrowing, obligate burrower, aggressive old world, experienced keeper, visibility


deep burrows

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