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Name: Heteroscodra maculata or “Togo Starburst Baboon” has a scientific name with Greek and Latin roots meaning “Different shield” and “spotted or marked”
Enclosure Size & Setup: As with most arboreals, we recommend an enclosure with at least two times the spider’s diagonal leg span for length and width, and at least three times the spider’s diagonal leg span for height.
Heteroscodra slings do like to burrow at the base of any provided vertical hides, so babies should be provided a good 2 inches of a good burrowing substrate such as Dig-It or coco cradle. Some adults of this species do like to have a burrow as well, though they can usually be found hiding on the backside of any provided bark.
Temperature Range (°F): Comfortable range for them is between 75-82, temperatures consistently 5 or more degrees outside of this range should be avoided for long term safety of the spider.
Humidity: 65%-75%, can be achieved by misting half of the enclosure every week or two depending on ventilation. Mist more or less frequently if you find that the substrate is drying out too quickly or just staying constantly wet.
Size: At time of sale specimens range from about ¼ inch diagonal leg span.
Age: H. maculata sold by Josh’s Frogs are at least 3 months old at time of sale. Females of this species can reach 12-14 years of age, while males will only live 3-4 years.
Feeding: At time of sale these animals are eating melanogaster fruit flies once a week. With size and age they will eat larger prey roughly the size of their carapace or smaller and will eat less frequently. Young tarantulas should be offered food every 4-7 days, adults every 7-10 days. Never attempt to feed a freshly molted tarantula less than a week after their molt to prevent injury to the spider.
Sexing: Due to their age, Heteroscodra maculata sold by Josh's Frogs are sold as unsexed. Sexing can be done accurately at 2.5-3 inch diagonal leg span and most accurately done by molt.
Females, between the top two sets of book lungs in the molt will have a pronounced spermatheca and uterus externus that will present as a "flap" that will catch and open if a pin is gently run down it. Males will have just a simple slit that does not budge if manipulated.
Coloration/Patterning: As slings, H. maculata are a mottled golden brown. As they molt and age, they gradually go to their adult coloration of a flat gray with a black starburst on the carapace and black patterning on the abdomen and legs.
Social Behavior: Heteroscodra maculata are not social creatures, any attempts to cohabitate will likely result in cannibalism.
Breeding: Spiders, for breeding purposes, should remain supervised when together and should only be attempted when they're well fed. Mature males can be put in the enclosure of a mature female for courtship/mating. Remove male promptly after insertion is observed, or immediately if female is aggressive rather than receptive. This is best done around a month after the female molts, as a freshly molted female is less likely to molt out of a pairing.
Natural Range: Heteroscodra maculata are found mainly in the African countries of Togo and Ghana
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