Common Rose Hair Tarantula (Grammostola porteri)

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Common Rose Hair Tarantula
Grammostola porteri
Common Rose Hair Tarantula (Grammostola porteri)
Name Common Rose Hair Tarantula
Name Lat. Grammostola porteri
Family Tarantulas
Family lat. Theraphosidae
Order Spiders
Order lat. Araneae
Origin South America
Habitat Forest, Shrub savanna
Diet Live insects
Humidity 60-70 %
Behavior Nocturnal, semi-aggressive
Keeping Individual
Care Level Difficult
Housing Semi humid terrarium
Breeding Moderately difficult
Life Span 5-15 years
Protection No
Metric Units
Size 6-7 cm
Temperature Day 20-24 °C
Temperature Night 18-20 °C
Housing Size 40 x 30 x 30 cm
US Units
Size 2.4"-2.8"
Temperature Day 68-75 °F
Temperature Night 64-68 °F
Housing Size 15" x 10" x 10"

Distribution and habitat

The distribution range of the crepuscular to nocturnal, ground-dwelling Gray Chilean bird spider is predominantly in Chile, where it occurs in a variety of habitats. There it lives in deep, self-dug living tubes.


A terrarium of e.g. 40 x 30 x 30 cm (L x W x H) for 1 animal is recommended. The terrarium should be placed in a quiet place without sunlight.

You need a terrarium structured with cork tubes, roots and stones (hiding places and visual protection), a graveable, 10-15 cm deep substrate of sand-clay-peat mixture, a small, shallow drinking vessel and for decoration artificial or potted plants (e.g. Ficus pumila, Scindapsus aureus). A small part of the substrate, especially the lower layers, should always be kept slightly moist. Once or twice a week the inside of the terrarium should be finely sprayed with water, but not the animals (danger of shock)

Temp. day: 20-24 °C Temp. night: 18-20 °C Humidity: 60-70

Thermostatically controlled floor heating or heating mats are recommended. The lighting duration should be 8-12 hours depending on the season. Special lamps with high UV content are not necessary.


The food supply should consist of crickets, cockroaches, house crickets, maggots and grasshoppers as well as other arachnids. The prey animal is "injected" with the biting tools (chelicerae) with a digestive juice, which liquefies the protein components and the prey can thus be sucked out (extracorporeal digestion). Young animals can be offered food 1-2 times a week, adults only every one to two weeks. Under no circumstances should they be overfed, the basic rule being that the abdomen should be no more than 1½ times the size of the cephalothorax. Unaccepted food must be removed after 1-2 days. Refusal of food may indicate a natural phase of starvation or an impending molt. No food animals should be in the terrarium during molting, they could injure the spider

A varied diet promotes health and prevents deficiency symptoms.

Reproduction and breeding

The smaller males can be recognized by their bulbs folded in towards the body. The female lays up to 500 eggs in her burrow lined with webs 4-5 months after mating. The eggs are spun into a dense cocoon in which the larvae develop and are guarded by the female. After the third molt, the young leave the burrow and feed on their own. Females become adults only after more than 6 years.

Obligation to report

Be sure to find out about any ordinances on keeping or bans on keeping this animal in your state or home municipality

Your pet store will be happy to provide you with further information.


In defense, they hurl irritant hairs with their hind legs against the attacker (bombard). These cause skin irritation and may cause corneal damage in the eyes as well as asthma-like symptoms. Care should also be taken when cleaning the terrarium, as irritant hairs can be stirred up from the substrate (safety goggles). A bite is very painful, the poison corresponds to that of a bee or wasp.

Crushed or held legs can be thrown off at a predetermined breaking point and regenerate completely after 1-2 molts.

The terrarium must have good ventilation without drafts and meet the species specific needs. Measuring devices such as thermometers, hygrometers, etc. are necessary. The lighting has to correspond to the species-specific day-night rhythm and has to be placed in such a way that the animals cannot injure themselves. The terrarium should be locked in such a way that neither unauthorized persons can open it nor the animals can escape. Special attention must be paid to thorough hygiene and impurities must be removed regularly

Further literature can be found in your pet store.


Text: petdata; Image: Franz Lowak

Source: ENGELMANN & LANGE (2011): Zootierhaltung - Tiere in menschlicher Obhut: Wirbellose, Harri Deutsch Verlag; KLAAS (2007): Vogelspinnen- Herkunft, Pflege, Arten, Verlag Eugen Ulmer