The blue foot baboon tarantula (more commonly known as the “Trapdoor Spider”) is a beginner-friendly, Old World Tarantula, characterised by beautiful grey-blue tips on its feet. Its scientific name is Idiothele Mira.
Planning on keeping this wonderful burrowing spider as your pet? Then this guide is just for you! In this, we’ll be discussing the following points that every tarantula keeper must know while handling these beautiful creatures:
- General facts and lifespan of the blue foot baboon tarantula
- Conditions for housing (size and type of enclosure, temperature, substrate and more)
- Temperament and personality
General facts and lifespan of the Blue Foot Baboon Tarantula
- The Trapdoor Spider is Native to Africa and most commonly found in parts of South Africa.
- They are mainly Fossorial (burrowing) Tarantulas and like to build their nests under the soil while waiting to ambush their prey
- Well known for the blue tips on their feet and a light brown or golden abdomen with black speckling.
- Female Idiothele Mira are expected to live up to 12 years old. Males have a shorter lifespan than females, amounting up to 3-4 years old (around the time they reach maturity). Make sure to take care of your female blue foot baboon tarantulas as fertile Idiothele Mira can give up to 24-25 slings!
Temperament and personality of blue footed tarantula
Idiothele Mira are usually a very shy species, however their behaviour varies from spider to spider. They are elusive hunters who hide underneath a small burrow which they usually cover with leaves, cork or bark hides, and stay there until they sense prey
They are very cooperative despite being an Old World species and are not very defensive. However, if they feel threatened, they become rather skittish and try to escape from their enclosure. So make sure you secure the enclosure well.
Blue Baboon Foot Tarantula venom and bite
As it is an Old World tarantula, it does not kick irritating hairs at you, but if it is unable to find a good hiding spot when threatened, it resorts to biting. Blue baboon foot tarantula Venom is quite strong, so putting them in such a situation must be avoided at all costs.
Blue Foot Baboon Tarantula size
Note that the Idiothele Mira are tiny in size, so they can easily hide in small unreachable places, and it is almost impossible to find them when they do so.
They are a fairly fast-growing species but don’t grow too big in size. Fully mature females reach a size of about 4.5 inches when they are about 2-3 years old.
Blue Baboon Tarantulas enclosure
As mentioned before, the Blue Baboon Tarantula is a rather fast growing species. So you will have to change their enclosure from time to time to fit their size requirements. Always remember that if the enclosure is too big or too small, the tarantula may get stressed out, so it’s very important to get the size of the enclosure accurate during the housing process.
As a sling, the Idiothele Mira can be stored in a dram vial. These are very convenient as they are transparent and you can always get a good look at them even when they are burrowed underneath the substrate. It’s important to look after your tarantula when it is a sling as they are most vulnerable at this stage.
Feel free to read our article on our recommendations for tarantula enclosures here.
A good choice for substrate would be a mixture of ground coconut fibre, ground sphagnum, charcoal powder and sand. There is no exact formula for determining the exact proportions these have to be mixed in, but make sure that the final substrate mix is loose enough for your tarantula to burrow in.
It is important to make sure that the substrate that you are using is free from other invasive organisms like ants, gnats. and termites as they may cause harm to the sling. You can microwave or bake your substrate for a couple of minutes and allow it to cool for a while before putting it in your tarantula’s enclosure to ensure all other organisms are killed.
Once the Blue Baboon Tarantulas get comfortable with their surroundings, they make a deep burrow in the substrate of their enclosure. If the substrate is not deep enough, they are unable to do so and become very restless. They usually do not show themselves, and rarely exit their burrows. They start to come out more often when they reach maturity for seeking a mate. Keep the substrate at least 5-6 inches deep to allow burrowing.
Water and humidity
Like a sling, the bottom of the substrate should be kept a little damp so that the sling gets adequate water. They are not big enough in this stage to get their own water cup as they do not drink too much. Fill around three-fourth of the dram vial with the substrate. You can also add a little moss for your Idiothele Mira to hide in. Keep checking their enclosure from time to time to make sure there is no build-up of fungus.
Time to re-house
Once the Baby Blue Foot Baboon Tarantula gets bigger (more than 1.5 inch or 3.75 cm approximately) you can shift them to a slightly bigger enclosure, like a box of (2.25×2.25×4 inches) or (5.625×5.625x10cm). Depth of the enclosure is more important than the width as they need enough room to burrow.
What else should you add in the enclosure for your Blue Foot Baboon Tarantula?
If the enclosure is big enough you can add alternate hiding areas for them like some pieces of moss, cork or bark, or a plastic plant to make the enclosure look more natural.
Sometimes the Blue Foot Baboon Tarantula may even move these added decorations around to help in hiding its burrow. At this stage, you can give them a small water dish, but make sure to keep the rest of its enclosure dry. Make sure that you clean its water dish at least twice a week and replenish its water supply.
Temperature of the enclosure
Blue Foot Baboon Tarantulas like their surroundings arid. They do fine at room temperature (which is around 75-80F or 18-25 C). Ensure that your tarantula’s enclosure is properly ventilated to prevent trapping of moisture and the formation of mold and fungus. Poke holes in the sides of the box to allow ventilation.
Upon gaining full size (around 3-4 inches), you can move your Idiothele Mira into a (5.2x6x6 inch) or a (13x15x15cm) box. This will most probably be the final rehousing that you will have to do for this little guy as they do not grow any bigger than this.
Feel free to read our article on our recommendations for tarantula enclosures here.
Blue footed baboon tarantula care – diet and feeding
Usually, Blue Foot Tarantulas have small appetites but are not picky eaters. Their diet majorly consists of tiny cockroaches and crickets.
Once the tarantula feels movement near its burrow, it will open the “Trapdoor” of its home and drag its prey inside. This is an interesting sight to see and is a unique feeding technique shown by the Idiothle Mira.
However, this process may not occur instantaneously. It takes them a while to sense their prey and accurately position themselves for the ambush. They are very tactful hunters who depend on strategy more than brute force and strength.
If the feeding process is taking too long, you can leave the prey inside the enclosure with the tarantula, provided that the prey isn’t big enough to harm your Blue Foot Tarantula.
If the Idiothele Mira has not taken down its prey for more than 6 hours, then either the prey is too big for it, or your tarantula is not hungry. This is very common when they are close to their molting season, as they prefer to conserve their energy and rest in this period.
As a sling, they even accept pre-killed prey. As a juvenile, you can feed them small roaches or crickets twice a week or a medium-sized prey item once a week. Adults can get one large prey item every 4-6 weeks.
Idiothele mira molting
When your tarantula is about to molt, it will show decreased appetite. The molting process can take anywhere between 30 to 180 minutes, although some spiders even take an entire day.
Your pet might lay on its back during the process. You might notice a bald spot starting to grow on its exoskeleton as well.
Remember that molting is a dangerous time for your buddy – it is very weak and its exoskeleton will be very vulnerable. So please take care of your pet and prevent it from getting injured. At this point, even a tiny cricket or cockroach can hurt your Mira tarantula.
Breeding the blue foot baboon tarantula
This is a relatively easy-to-breed species because the female does not attack the male. Keep your enclosure’s temperature between 27 and 28 degrees C (around 80 F) at the time of breeding. You can also mist/spray the substrate every now and then.
If mating is successful, you might notice the egg sac form within 3-4 months. Take your female out and place the nymphs in different containers as well. You can easily expect about 35 to 40 healthy spiderlings after successful mating.
The blue foot baboon tarantula is a small, compact Old World tarantula species that is fairly easy to take care of. They do bite but their venom is not fatal. Unlike New World tarantulas, they don’t send out urticating hairs when handled.
Now that you know the main aspects of your Blue foot baboon tarantula care sheet, we hope you can raise your pet easily and keep them healthy and safe.