Mexican Red-kneed Tarantula Brachypelma smithi/Brachypelma hamorii

Mexican Red-kneed Tarantula
Mexican Red-kneed Tarantula
Mexican Red-kneed Tarantula
The Mexican Red-kneed Tarantula or Mexican Red-knee Bird-eating Spider is two species of similar-looking large spider native to the West Coast of Mexico, B. smithi being further south than B. hamorii. Their ranges do not overlap. Habitat is semi-desert to forest.
Mexican Red-kneed Tarantula
Mexican Red-kneed Tarantula
Mexican Red-kneed Tarantula
Despite the name "Bird-eating Spider", their diet is mainly large insects, lizards, small snakes and small mammals, although they will eat small birds if they can. In addition to its 8 eyes, the ends of its legs can detect taste, smell and vibrations. Leg span is some 14 cm (6 inches). Lifespan can be up to 30 years for females but only some 5 years for males.
Mexican Red-kneed Tarantula
Mexican Red-kneed Tarantula
Mexican Red-kneed Tarantula
A female can have some 700 babies in her egg sac, but only a few are likely to survive to adulthood without predation. Their venom is unlikely to kill a human but an infection or allergy from the bite or irritation from their ejected hairs can cause problems. The name Tarantula comes from Taranto in Italy and originally referred to a biting Wolf Spider but is now in general use for extra large, hairy spiders from Latin America.