Neoholothele incei

Neoholothele incei

Neoholothele incei (FOP-Cambridge, 1898), also known as “Trinidad olive”, is a very beautiful dwarfspecies due to its behavior, coloration, size and speed from Trinidad and Venezuela. Contrary to what you might expect from a tarantula, Holothele incei is with a span width of 6cm not the tallest of the family. The species is very popular amongst hobbyists, because of their communal capabilities. Neoholothele incei is sometimes named as Hapalopus incei.


Scientific name: Neoholothele incei

Synonym: Neoholothele vellardi (Rudloff, 1997).

Subfamily: Schismatothelinae.

Common name: Trinidad olive.

Previous name: Hapalopus incei (FOP-Cambridge/1898).

World spider catalog

Type: Burrowing bird spider.

Category: New world tarantula.

Urticating setae: Yes.

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

OriginCaribbeanTrinidad, Venezuela.

Body length: ≤ 3-4cm.

Span width: ≤ 6-7cm.

Growth rate: Fast.

Life expectancy: Females can become 7 years old. Males are given a shorter lifetime from 2 years.

Behavior: Neoholothele incei is a docile, but very fast species. Interesting is the fact Neoholothele incei can be kept communal. Provide a correct amount of food in order to prevent cannibalism. This semi-social lifestyle is very special for a bird spider. Similar behavior has been observed by other Ischnocolinae (Heterothele spp.), Eumenophorinae (Hysterocrates spp., Monocentropus spp.) and some species of the Poecilotheria-genus. Neoholothele incei will create a very interesting and beautiful webcomplex, especially when kept communal. The way they’re waiting for unexpecting prey to pass by, catching it with an amazing speed, is very intriguing. Unless they’re in pre-molt, Neoholothele incei won’t refuse prey very fast.

Accessibility (1/beginner, 10/expert): 4.


>>> First aid

Neoholothele incei lives in tropical humid and warm area. Temperatures almost daily reach levels up to 30°C with high humidity. Please be informed of the fact the spider will protect itself against the burning sun underneath tree trunks, branches, leaves and abandoned burrows. Do not overheat the terrarium. Rainfalls from may until december can last for days. Very moist substrate from time to time is good for spiders of the Neoholothele-genus, but make sure no moldproblems occur.

Environmental conditions

Temperature: 25-28°C (day), 20-25°C (night).

Humidity: 70-80%.


Adult: LxWxH: 20x20x20. Min. 4x span width in surface. Chose a larger terrarium if you’re keeping them communal.

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

* Do not overdecorate the terrarium, except for a few anchor points. You’ll be rewarded with a beautiful web.


Adult: Min. 2x span width.

Smaller than adult: Min. 2x span width.

* The spider lives in humid area. Note that cages with high humidity levels are very sensitive for mites and other parasites. Please take your precautions.


Wet season: May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December.

Dry season: February, March, April.

Warmest months: All year long. Temperatures in Trinidad throughout the whole year are aroung 30-35°C.

Coldest months: None. The coldest month don’t differ that much from the other months.

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.


Mating Neoholothele incei normally runs smoothly. The second time you introduce a male, the female probably won’t accept his presence and react very defensive. In order to keep him alive it’s recommended to seperate male and female immediately after mating.

• Only start breeding 4-6 weeks (or later) after the spider molted. If the female molts between pairing and cocoon, the eggs will remain unfertilized.

• Make sure the female is well-fed (not obese) before you introduce the male.

• Provide hiding places and an escaping route for the male.

• 3 weeks after mating Neoholothele incei will start making her cocoon. Deprive the cocoon, when desired, 3 weeks later. Store the eggs at a humidity of 70% and a temperature of 26-29°C. Expect 50-100 spiderlings to come out.

• It’s not unusual that Neoholothele incei creates a second cocoon 8 weeks after the first one. The amount of fertilized eggs will probably be less than the first cocoon.


• Female Neoholothele incei are shiney gold, while male are gray?

• There is a variant named “Neoholothele incei gold” as well?


• Description of Neoholothele gen. nov. (Araneae, Theraphosidae, Schismatothelinae).


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

• Photography: Julian Kamzol (website, flickr)