Other common names: Ornamental Baboon Tarantula
Scientific name: Heteroscodra maculata
The Togo Starburst Baboon is an arboreal tarantula originating in Africa. They are commonly seen in Togo, Cameroon, and Ghana. They hide in tree bark, holes in trees, and other cracks or crevices in higher elevation.
Appearance / health:
They are overall a dark grey or a grey-tan color with black markings overlaying the grey. These black markings can resemble stripes, dots, and other patterns. They are stocky even though they are arboreal. An adult may reach up to 5 inches.
Behavior / temperament:
These are very fast, and aggressive. Handling is not recommended as they will resort to biting if provoked enough. The bite has been known to be worse than a bee sting but not usually medically significant. Most arboreal spiders are not recommended for beginners, and this one is no different. It should only be kept by experienced tarantula keepers.
These tarantulas need height rather than floor space. A 10 gallon tipped on the side so the length now creates height is a good idea. Create a secure top so that you can access half of the tank, instead of the whole thing coming off, since it’s laying on the side, the top is now the whole front. Spiderlings and younger tarantulas can live in a clear plastic container or pill bottles until they are big enough for the adult enclosure.
These tarantulas come from warm and semi-humid areas and should be kept in temperature ranges of 75-80F with humidity levels around 60-65%. Substrate should be a mix of potting soil, vermiculite, and/or peat moss that should be kept 2-4 inches deep. Mist or lightly moisten the substrate 1-2 times a week to help keep the humidity up. A shallow water dish may also be provided. Tank décor should be items that will allow ample climbing room, but should be well secure so the tarantula will not get hurt. Cork bark, fake plants, branches, twigs, driftwood and other items may be provided.
Any climbing or soft bodied flying insects are suitable for the Togo Starburst Baboon. These include crickets, cockroaches, moths, grasshoppers, and more. Large adults may also get an occasional pinkie mouse.
favorite, awesome show piece, beautiful markings, good appetite
vertical setup, unexperienced keeper handle, potent venom, H. maculata bite, severe muscle cramping
Old World species
this is one of my personal favorite old world tarantulas. Togos have beautiful markings and do alot of webbing. this is an old world T originating from Africa. they are tree dwelling Ts that require a vertical setup and pieces of bark to hide behind. this T is not extremely active during the day and is very sensitive to light. it is not suggested that an unexperienced keeper handle this spider due to them being very fast and packing a pretty decent bite. this T makes an awesome show piece and they breed well
From Spiderdan Feb 13 2010 9:20AM
This is a spider that definitely has some pros and cons. It is, unquestionably, one of the most striking baboons in the hobby, and is very commonly kept.
H. maculata are small to average sized, semi arboreal baboon spiders. They hail from Africa and have very potent, medically significant venom. Moreso than many other Old World species. While death has never been recorded from a H. maculata bite, hospitalization has been reported for severe muscle cramping, heart palpitations, nausea, vomiting, rapid breathing, etc. Care should be taken to NEVER handle these.
Due to their venom potency, these are not for children, households with young children or curious pets that could potentially come into contact with the tarantula, or anyone who does not have sufficient experience keeping tarantulas. They are very, very fast. The upside, is that they are also very shy. Though they have speed and potent venom, H. maculata would much rather run and hide than stand and fight, in my experience.
If left alone as a display animal, H. maculata is hit and miss - it's not as visible as most, but when it is out, it's patterning and coloration more than make up for when you don't see it. It is one of the few species with this unique cream/white contrasted with black. Females become more white as they age and grow.
This species is relatively hardy and easy to care for, but care should be taken with small slings as they can dehydrate quickly. Once they reach 1-2" in size, they're not as prone to this, and can be kept a little more dry. Provide babies with enough room in which to burrow as well. Adults prefer to option to burrow, but also have arboreal tendencies..
From HeartlandInvert Sep 8 2014 4:02PM