Chromatopelma cyaneopubescens

Chromatopelma cyaneopubescens

Chromatopelma cyaneopubescens (Strand/1907), also known as “Greenbottle blue”, is a wonderful bird spider due to its coloration and webbehavior from Venezuela. This in combination with the fact that she’s rather docile, makes her one of the most perfect species to enter the hobby with. In 1907 she’s officially been published by Strand as Eurypelma cyaneopubescens. Later, in 1939, Petrunkevitch moved her to the Delopelma-genus (which is today the Aphonopelma-genus). Nevertheless spiders of the Aphonopelma-genus are anatomically different due to its burrowing characteristics, which is the main reason why Schmidt gave Chromatopelma cyaneopubescens a genus for herself in 1995.


I. SPECIFIC INFORMATION

A bright blue bird spider is breathtakingly beautiful, but no exception (ex. Poecilotheria metallica). Plenty of blue tarantulas are known, but why are they blue and not green or pink? This article will open your eyes. Highly recommended.

Scientific name: Chromatopelma cyaneopubescens.

Subfamily: Theraphosinae.

Common name: Greenbottle Blue (GBB).

Previous names: Eurypelma cyaneopubescens Strand, 1907, Delopelma cyaneopubescens Petrunkevitch, 1939.

World spider catalog

Type: Terrestrial bird spider.

Category: New world tarantula.

Urticating setae: Yes, type III and IV (abdomen).

Venom: Probably mild. No valuable scientific research has been done yet.

OriginNoord-Venezuela, peninsula Paraguaná. The spider has been seen in Punto Fijo as well.

Body length: ≤ 7cm.

Span width: ≤ 15-16cm.

Behavior: Chromatopelma cyaneopubescens is docile overall, but considered to be a little more skittish than other recommended spiders for beginning hobbyists. The spider will try to flee at first. Persistent provocation can and probably will result in use of urticating setae. They’re not lightning fast, but don’t be surprised by their reflexes. Intriguing about the species is the fact they make beautiful webs!

Growth rate: Medium. Spiderlings are remarkably large.

Life expectancy: Females become up to 12-14 years old. Males are given a shorter lifetime around 4 years.

Very important: Keep substrate dry.

Accessibility (1/beginner, 10/expert): 2.


II. INFORMATION FOR KEEPERS

>>> First aid

Chromatopelma cyaneopubescens lives in the very warm and dry deserts of northern Venezuela, Paraguaná. Please be informed of the fact the spider will protect herself against the burning sun underneath bushes and tree trunks, creating a beautiful web. Do not overheat the terrarium. Take a look at this video to get an image of the environment (starting at 5 minutes).

Environmental conditions

Temperature: 25-28°C (day), 23-25°C (night).

Humidity: 40-50%. 60-70% during 5 consequtive weeks a year.

Terrarium

Adult: LxWxH: 30x30x30. Min. 3-4x span width in surface.

Smaller than adult: Min. 3-4x span width in surface.

* Provide many anchor points to encourage webbing behavior.

Substrate

Adult: Min. 1x body length.

Smaller than adult: 1x span width.

* Keep substrate rather dry. Provide a water bowl.

* Sprinkle the web every 2-3 days at one side with a little water.

Climate

Wet season: October, November, December.

Dry season: January, February, March, April, August.

Warmest months: August.

Coldest month: January, which is relative. Temperatures are always high.

For more information about the local climate: Click here.

* You might like to consider an adjustment of these data with your local climate. Do not exceed minima or maxima and, if necessary, organize the year making your bird spider experience different seasons. This is very important form the moment you’d like to start breeding.


III. INFORMATION FOR BREEDERS

Planning a mating, it’s highly recommended you have a few adult males nearby. Whether you’re doing it correct or not, many males won’t survive their encounter with the female. The species is notorious for cannibalism and even more when you don’t introduce spring. In order to be successful breeding the species, you better know exactly what you’re doing.

• Introduce spring keeping 1 side of the terrarium moist. Sprinkle the web daily for 1 week. Make sure the burrow is kept dry.

• Powerfeed the female for 5 days, 1 week after you’ve introduced spring. Make sure the female is well-fed (not obese) before you introduce the male.

• Introduce the male at the end of week 2 (day 13-14). The male will take his time, presenting himself for hours. If the male’s presence is tolerated, leave them together for a few days. Provide enough hiding places for the male. It is possible the female goes for a direct hit. Arm yourself with greased tweezers. When the male didn’t survive, introduce a second male when she’s done eating.

• Keep feeding the female after mating and simulate spring for another 3 weeks (1 side moist, sprinkle the web daily). Stop when she starts rejecting food. Let the cage dry out.

• 3-4 months after mating the female will start making the cocoon. Deprive the cocoon, when desired, 4 weeks after it was made. Store the eggs in the incubator at a humidity of 65-70% and a temperature of 25-28°C. Spiderlings are remarkably large and beautiful!


IV. DID YOU KNOW…

Chromatopelma cyaneopubescens is our favorite species for beginners?

• Blue spiders are common, but green spiders are rather rare (more information)?

• Spiderlings are at least as beautiful as their adult versions?

Chromatopelma cyaneopubescens


V. LITERATURE

• About the blue color: Blue reflectance in tarantulas is evolutionarily conserved despite nanostructural diversity.


VI. COPYRIGHT

• Text: Dennis Van Vlierberghe (facebookgroup and –page)

• Photography: Yvonne Kindl (flickr) • Julian Kamzol (website, flickr, facebookpage)

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