Costa Rican Zebra Tarantula (Aphonopelma seemanni)
Aphonopelma seemanni, or more widely known as The Costa Rican Zebra tarantula is a eight – legged beauty from Central America. It’s mostly known for its dark brown to black color. It’s famous for the vertical white stripes down its legs, from which it also got its name. The Costa Rican Zebra that inhabits Costa Rica is usually black with white stripes, but the ones that inhabit Nicaragua are most likely brown or dark brown with cream color stripes. They both are part of the Aphonopelma genes and their color is the only variation. When fully gown they can get a leg span of five inches (12 cm). Also, they are easy to maintain, so are perfect to be kept by beginners or owners with entry level experience, as well as experts.
The Costa Rican Zebra tarantula Distribution
The Costa Rican Zebra can be found in most of Central America – Costa Rica (most widely in the west), Honduras, Nicaragua and some parts of Guatemala.
The Costa Rican Zebra tarantula Natural Habitat
The Costa Rican Zebra tarantula is a terrestrial animal that lives is rainforests and therefore is in need of great humidity. They also are deep-buriers, meaning that they like to live under soil. They live in open semi-arid scrublands, and can br found in large aggregations.
The Costa Rican Zebra tarantula is a carnivore like all spiders. This means that it eats that they eat only live prey. Their diet is mostly made of crickets, cockroaches, grasshoppers, small lizards, small beetles, pinkie mice and other insects that they might catch.
The female Costa Rican Zebra tarantulas can live up to 15 to 20 years, but the males have far shorter life span of around 5 years, with maturation on 2 or 3 years.
Male Zebra tarantulas are smaller that the female ones. After the male reaches maturity, they make a web and rub themselves on it in order to release semen. After that they get it on their front pincers and if they meet a female, they give mutual signal that they are ready for reproducing. The male injects the semen from his pincers into the abdomen of the female. The female than lays eggs (50 to 2,000) and protects them with web. After 6 to 8 weeks, the eggs hatch and the spiderlings feed of the remaining of the eggs.
The Costa Rican Zebra tarantula Housing
The most important thing about the Costa Rican Zebra tarantula tank (terrarium) is that it needs to be wide and long, and not high. The Costa Rican Zebra tarantula is a great escapist which means that they can move very fast and escape. So, you must secure the top part of the tank and be sure that the tarantula can’t climb and get away. Further more, the next important thing is the humidity. They live in rainforests, so they are in need of fresh water at all times. Make sure to have a container and chance the water daily.
Throughout the terrarium bottom there should be at least four inches (10 cm) potting soul and on some parts peat moss. Moreover, you could decorate the tank with a log or cork bark. Don’t forget the shallow water container and a few areas which will not have moss in order for the Costa Rican Zebra tarantula to dig in. As decorations you could use rocks or plants (either fake or real).
Different Names for The Costa Rican Zebra tarantula
Zebra Tarantula, Stripe Knee Tarantula, and Stripe Kneed Tarantula.
Medium development rate.
The temperature in the terrarium should be approximately 78-85 Fahrenheit (25-29C) in the daytime, and around 72-77 Fahrenheit (22-25C) at night time. The humidity should be around 75-80 percent at all times.
Costa Rican Zebra tarantulas tend to be naturally nervous and easily scared. They need to be handled with a lot of care and it’s not recommended to be held up. Even though their venom is light and doesn’t have big impact on humans, their hair is a natural weapon and can cause irritations, rashes and even blindness if it gets in the eyes. They are really fast movers, so keep an eye at them and make sure that they can’t get out of the terrarium easily. They also are nocturnal animals – they are active at night time and sleep most of the day.
The males reach maturity after 2 to 3 years of birth and the females somewhat later, between 5-6 years. In some cases the female even eats the male after mating. A usual egg sac of a Costa Rican Zebra female tarantula has between 50 and 2,000 eggs which hatch after 6 to 8 weeks. In the mean time, the female rotates and turns the eggs a lot, in order to keep them from deforming.