Rosamond Gifford Zoo

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Chilean Rose-Haired Tarantula

Grammostola rosea

Chilean Rose-Haired tarantulas are found in the dry grasslands and deserts of Chile, where they prey on insects and small animals. and they up to 3-10 years if male and 15-20 years if female. Rose-haired tarantulas have reddish/orange, pink or copper colored hairs all over their bodies.

Range & Habitat

In the Wild: This species of tarantula can be found in Chile, in dry grassland regions at the edge of the  desert.  

At the Zoo: Zoo to You Collection (not on exhibit, appears in education programs)

Conservation Status: Not Evaluated

Because of the wide-spread collection of this species from the wild for the pet trade, increasing regulation in the future is probably inevitable in order to protect it from becoming threatened and/or endangered. There are a number of other tarantula species in the world that are currently protected, and several more may be in the future. There are a few laws in effect now, but this is an area mostly unregulated at the present time.

Diet

In the Wild: insects and other arthropods, sometimes small animals (cannot swallow solid food)  

At the Zoo: crickets and other larger food items as they grow

Life Span

In the Wild - males 3-10 years, females 15-20 years; In Human Care - males less than 2 years, females 20 or more years (average is 12 years)

Fun Facts about the Chilean Rose-Haired Tarantula

  • The Chilean rose-haired tarantula is the hardiest of tarantulas and is easy to find in human care. Although it  has a reputation for being docile (calm), it varies widely from individual to individual.  
  • Hairs on the abdomen have been modified to serve as defense weapons. They possess sharp tips with  microscopic barbs. When threatened, the tarantula will use its back legs to kick off a cloud of hairs at its attacker.   
  • All tarantulas have a certain amount of venom. Although most people are not affected by this species, some people may be allergic to or sensitive to the venom, making it a potentially dangerous animal. This is  one reason why people should not handle this tarantula unless properly trained.

Sources

California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, (n.d.). Class: arachnida, order: araneae (spiders).  Retrieved Feb. 07, 2006, from Cal Poly Pomona Web site: http://www.csupomona.edu/~rskaae/CD1/spiders.html.  

Flank, Jr., L. (1998). An owner's guide to a happy healthy pet - the tarantula. New York: Howell Book  House.  

The Central Pets Educational Foundation, (n.d.). Chilean rose tarantula. Retrieved Oct. 22, 2005, from CentralPets.com Web site: http://www.centralpets.com/animals/insects/tarantulas/tar2567.html.

Chilean rose tarantula. (2018, October 31). Retrieved December 04, 2020, from https://nationalzoo.si.edu/animals/chilean-rose-tarantula

Updated December 29, 2020
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