My family and I went to the new Butterfly Exhibit at Thanksgiving Point and loved it! But what caught me by surprise was how many different species of tarantulas were also on display - 11 to be exact. Here are the photos of those tarantulas I took, and a little fact about each one.
By the way, I think tarantulas are fascinating, even though they do creep me out like most people. When I was writing Acea and the Animal Kingdom, I watched hours of tarantula videos when researching for my king tarantula in the book. If you haven't read my first novel yet, you can check it out on Amazon here.
Goliath Bird Eating Tarantula:
The LARGEST arachnid on the planet. I learned that this guy is just an infant and still has alot of growing left to do. They don't always eat birds, but they will. Think about that.
Gooty Sapphire Tarantula:
Not the best picture - this guy was trying hard to hide in a corner. But these tarantulas are called "sapphire" for a reason - their legs end up becoming a very brilliant blue-sapphire color. Not only are they known as one of the most beautiful species, but they are extremely poisonous. Just one bite will leave a human in intense pain for about a week.
Arizona Blond Tarantula:
See it? Hiding behind the Delicate Arch... This guy was sharing a tank with some scorpions. It's a burrowing spider, as you can tell from it hiding in this picture. Like most species, they are nocturnal predators.
Togo Starburst Tarantula
This one is hiding in its burrow - in the upper left. It looks like some kind of horror movie scene, right? This species is native to West Africa. It's also called the Ornamental Baboon Tarantula. They have very thick hind legs, leading some to think they are apart of the baboon spider species, even though they are not.
Brazilian Whiteknee Tarantula
These are among the larger species, and get up to full size quickly. Females are larger than males, with leg-spans of up to 8.5 inches. They are commonly kept as pets. As you can guess, they're native to Brazil.
Mexican Redknee Tarantula
Check this thing out! Females have a large lifespan - up to 30 years! The males have a lifespan of 5 years. They dwell in Mexico along primarily the coastal areas near the Pacific Ocean. Females spend most of their lives in their burrows.
Greenbottle Blue Tarantula
This was my favorite one to see - look at it perched on top of its kingdom! It's hard to tell from the lighting, but their body is a fierce blue, with a starkly-orange abdomen. It's among the most dramatically-covered tarantulas. Native to Venezuela. In captivity, it's common for their webs to cover the entire container.
Trinidad Chevron Tarantula
I put this video up because it was active! They're native to Trinidad (located in the Caribbean). It's venom is actually part of a a toxin that provides therapeutic help for patients suffering a stroke. Crazy, right?
I sincerely hope everyone has a great 2019. Let's kick start it with some interesting facts about Pigs!
Pigs are smart! You may think they're lazy, but research shows that their cognitive abilities are better than dogs and 3-year old kids! They're actually considered one of the more sophisticated animals - all that laying around must be because their philosophizing.
Pigs don't "eat like pigs" - they actually enjoy eating slowly and savoring their meal.
Pigs actually are clean! Really? Well, research shows that if given sufficient living space, pigs will keep the area clean that they lay and sleep on. They keep their toilets far from their living and feeding areas. Mind. Blown.
Pigs are very social - they are known to have at least 20 different vocalizations. They form close bonds with each other and like to sleep close to each other as well. They hate to be alone.
Pigs have great memories - they can remember things for several years.
Pigs' sense of smell is incredible - if you think just dogs have great senses of smell, you're forgetting about pigs. Their snouts have the highest density of tactile receptors (so, more dense than a dog's nose). Their sense of smell is about 20,000 times more sensitive than a human's sense of smell. You wouldn't guess it from the way a pig smells, right?