Beginner’s Guide To The Theraphosa Stirmi Tarantula (Goliath Bird Eating Spider)
Common name: Burgundy Goliath Birdeater
Scientific name: Theraphosa stirmi
Appearance: Goliath bird eating spiders are large, heavy-bodied and are rich burgundy-brown after a molt. They also have distinctive reddish hairs on legs and abdomen post-molt.
Origin: Guyana, Venezuela, Northern Brazil, French Guiana, Suriname
Type: Old World, Terrestrial
Size: Adults can grow to reach 10 to 12 inches. This is a medium to fast-growing species.
Life span: Goliath bird eating spiders males live shorter lives than females, between 2 and 5 years. Females can live up to 15+ years.
Attitude: This is an intermediate/advanced tarantula. Burgundy Goliath Birdeaters are docile but can be skittish. They become more docile as they mature.
Defensive behavior: A Theraphosa stirmi would rather run or kick urticating hairs than bite, and will readily use these tactics in self-defense.
Bite danger: The venom of a Goliath bird eating spider is reportedly mild – But the fangs can be 1 inch +, making mechanical damage a real concern.
Handling: It is not recommended that you handle a Theraphosa stirmi tarantula.
Diet/Nutrition: Theraphosa stirmi are very aggressive eaters and only refuse food when in pre-molt. They can eat dubia roaches, crickets and the occasional pinky mouse.
Housing (see our shop for products!):
- Enclosure: Adults should be given a large enclosure such as a 20 gallon tank.
- Substrate: 4 inches of substrate (can use a mixture of peat moss, vermiculite and coconut fiber)
- Decor: A vertical barreled cork bark or hide is recommended.
- Humidity: 70 – 80%
- Ventilation: Good ventilation is important to prevent mold growth in the enclosure.
- Lighting: Burgundy Goliath Birdeater don’t need special lighting.
- Water: A large water dish should always be provided.
- Temperature: The ideal temperature for a Burgundy Goliath Birdeater is 78° – 80°F. They are comfortable at temperatures slightly above room temperature.
Fun facts: The Theraphosa stirmi tarantula, along with the other Theraphosa, are the largest known species of tarantula on the planet.
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