Tarantulas – How to handle spiders

Tarantulas – How to handle spiders. To start with, we do not recommend anyone handle tarantulas. This is for a number of reasons.


Firstly, although there is no such thing as  “deadly” tarantulas”  (I’ll tell you a story about that at the end) some do have medically significant bites and can be quite aggressive and fast. I’m not going to tell you how to handle one of these.

Secondly you may be allergic (unlikely but possible) to a tarantulas venom. Unfortunately the way to find out if you are is to get bitten and then of course it’s too late.

Just as importantly, tarantulas are delicate animals. They can be severely damaged or even killed by falls of just a few inches. Obviously this is more likely to happen during handling.

Lastly, some tarantulas (new world species) have urticating setae (hairs). Even if they do not flick them at you in defense you will still get them on you if you handled the spider. If you touch your face, or put your fingers anywhere near your eye you are going to be in trouble. I’ve had tarantulas hairs in my eye. The whole of the side or my face swelled. It looked  like I had sacks of water hanging under my eye and it hurt like a… well like something very painful.

Those points aside you may feel that at times it is necessary to handle your spider so I’ve put together a short video showing two methods. At some point, when I next need to move or “re-pot” one of our more aggressive types I’ll do a video on my favourite method for doing this. Trust me, it will not involve picking it up! Enjoy.

Oh and the story about “deadly tarantulas”…. well about 6 months after we opened we were robbed of the contents of our till. The police were here until about 8pm on a Saturday night, which round here gets noticed. On the following Monday I had two young girls come in the shop and ask what was going to happen to me. I asked what they meant and they said “well, a man came in your shop on Saturday and was bitten by a deadly tarantula and died, that’s why the police were here…” My response to this was that they should know that was rubbish because for a start there’s no such thing etc. Just goes to show how some of the more ridiculous stories about tarantulas can start and spread.

For more species specific information on tarantulas, contact us or pop in the shop and see me. we do great deals on complete set ups and have really good prices for a wide variety of spiders.

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