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New World and Old World tarantula's
New world and Old world
(Pictures used here are my own, of my own animal)
New world tarantula's
The new world tarantula is one of a kind in the arachnid world. They are in no sense different to old world tarantula's, although there tollerant levels are higher of us humans than old world are, they still have the ability to bite. So what is the diffrence between them, why are they more tollerable to us than old world...
New world tarantula's have an extra 1 or 2 defences against us, they are effective, and 1 of the 2 can cause mild to severe discomfort. The 2 different defences are "urticating hairs", and what is known as the "Poop cannon".
The poop cannon is harmless to say the least, but is messy. Not all new world tarantula's have this option, but a very few select tarantula's have this as an extra defence. The more likely suspects for this defence, are commonly known as pink toes, or Avicularia spp (Spp = species).
Urticating hairs come in few different structures, but all are barbed. The urticating hairs of a tarantula can cause discomfort. To give an idea of the discomfort, bellow is just a simple 3 grade urticating hair effect write out....
Grade 1: Mild to no effect.
Grade 2: Effective, and will cause mild discomfort and possibly a small rash.
Grade 3: Very effective, and will cause a lot of discomfort. (E.g mild stinging, itching erratically, rashes, and more)
Warning: In the event that urticating hairs come in contact with eyes, contact a Dr immediately, Do not rub eyes or touch eyes there after. Eyes will be very irritated, and can cause short term blindness.
As horrible as urticating hairs sound, as long as you take proper precautions, you are in no danger of any of the above. If in the event you are flicked with urticating hairs, Wash hands immediately with hot water and soap,
A tarantula will also use urticating hairs on the webs they lay, as a defence against the predators. During the laying of the webs, you may notice that the tarantula is kicking hairs, the tarantula does this also as a defence, and what is happening is, the spider lays webs, and flicks hairs onto the webs that are laid. Most commonly seen during the time of laying a moult matt, as a defence against predators during the moult.
Recommendation: Always were gloves when working with these animals.
Old world tarantula's
Old world tarantula's have non of the above, no urticating hairs, no poop cannon. The only defence they have is biting, don't be supprized to see a lot of attitude from an old world, that's there only way to say leave me alone. Remember a tarantula, new or old world, does not have hands that curl up into fist's, they don't have the abillity to kick, even if they do have 8 legs, there only defence is to flick, shoot poop at you, or bite. Now as scary as some of these defences may sound, remember you are given fair warning by the animal, such as a threat pose, bareing there fangs, as a warning that if you don't go away, i will have you. Always respect new world and old world tarantula's, they mean you no harm, aslong as you follow 1 rule, "Look but don't touch"... Push past this rule, you are risking a bite for you, and a lot of stress for them, and potentially death for the spider, if you fling your hand during the bite.