You go inside your spider room and take out your tarantula’s enclosure as it is feeding time. Poof! It is nowhere to be found. What do you do? Keep your wits with you and do not panic as more often than not, you can still find your escaped tarantula.
Escaped tarantulas do not go far from their enclosure. So you have to block all the exits of the room and start looking at dark and moist places. There are also ways on how to coax your T out of hiding. Always be gentle while looking as you might accidentally hurt your T.
So calm down, everything is going to be all right. Your mind must have been cluttered with all of the scary tarantula stories of them biting while you are asleep or putting on your shoes. If you follow the tips in this article, your T will be safe and sound in his enclosure in no time.
Why Does Your Tarantula Want To Escape?
Before we talk about the different ways on how you can look for your escaped tarantula, let us first go over why they want to escape in the first place. Mind you, they do not do this out of spite. So do not think that your T just wants to annoy you.
Tarantulas may not be great escape artists, but they are definitely natural predators. Therefore, there is something in them that makes them want to hunt for prey. Unfortunately, inside their enclosure, this is impossible, except if there is some live uneaten food left inside.
So if there is any chance that they can get, they would like to exercise this hunting instinct. Another reason is that male tarantulas are constantly looking for females. This is probably the reason why most tarantula escapees are males.
They have this constant need to fulfill their most valuable mission, and that is to breed. So if they sense that there is a female around, they will try to break out in order to mate with her.
Even if you do not have female tarantulas in your home, your male T will find his way to get out of his enclosure and look for one.
Lastly, there might be something in the enclosure that does not fulfill the needs of your tarantula. In the case of an arboreal tarantula, they may feel that the climbing space in their enclosure is not enough. Therefore, they need to be let out so that they can climb to their heart’s content.
Before we go any further, we believe that prevention is better than cure. Therefore, you should learn how to prevent your tarantula from escaping in the first place. You can read our article on that.
Ways On How Your Tarantula Can Escape
How did your tarantula escape? Is it hiding some sort of key in one of his legs? Kidding aside, your tarantula was able to escape due to a given opportunity.
They will surely not be scurrying around their enclosure and try to find ways to escape. They will simply wait for an opportunity to escape and they will not think twice about grabbing that chance.
If you keep your tarantula in a simple container that has a plastic lid for a cover, there will be those times when you are rushing and you might not close the lid properly. Your tarantula will be able to detect excess air coming from that area and it can feel where the loose part is.
With the use of his strong legs, it can make the loose area become bigger so that it can crawl out of the container. The good thing about Ts is that they will not try to squeeze out of a space where they know they will not perfectly fit.
Therefore, you are sure that if you have an escapee, it most likely did not injure himself for the sake of escaping.
If you have a designated enclosure for your tarantula, usually the door is at the front of the enclosure. Some doors have a hatch, while others just completely snap to the enclosure.
Whatever door you have, you should always make sure that it is shut tightly. If you were able to leave it slightly ajar, your tarantula will know and it can simply crawl his way out of his enclosure.
For some owners, they would rather use a mesh on top of the enclosure as opposed to a lid or door as it can help with ventilation. However, through regular wear and tear, there will be times when the mesh gets broken or there are some areas where it will have a weak spot.
Again, if your tarantula is the type that loves to climb, it can find this weak spot and it will eventually find a way to escape.
How To Find My Escaped Tarantula?
Let us now talk about how you can find your escaped tarantula. It can be such an arduous task, but of course, all of it will be worthwhile once you find your T, as both you and your T will be safe.
1. Block Doorways And Vents
Your tarantula will not venture far away from its enclosure from the get-go. It will take his sweet time exploring the areas around his enclosure. Therefore, more often than not, an escaped tarantula can still be inside the room.
So in order to make sure that it does not go into the other rooms of your house, you should block all the places where it can escape. This can be the door or vents. For large tarantulas, this can help in deterring them from leaving the room as they will not fit.
However, for smaller tarantulas, they can easily get into vents and underneath the doors, so they are more likely to escape to other rooms. But the rule of thumb is, to always secure the room where the enclosure of your T is before trying to look for your T in other rooms.
2. Determine The Type Of Your Tarantula
If you have a terrestrial tarantula, they will surely hide in places that are near the ground. On the other hand, if you have an arboreal tarantula, then chances are they are in high places like your walls and ceiling.
You have to look at places where the type of tarantula will naturally hang around if it is out of the wild. For arboreals, even though they are actually in plain sight, they will hang around the corner of the walls, thinking that they are properly concealed.
For terrestrial tarantulas, they will immediately look for a dark place on the ground like shoes, clothes, boxes, etc.
3. Check Dark Places
This can also apply whatever type of tarantula you have, even the arboreal ones. Once they have a feel of the area, they will look for dark and moist places. So this can be at the back of cabinets, closets, hampers, boxes on the ground, and the like.
You can also check your bed, but be careful while tossing your blankets and pillows as you might hurt your tarantula. Their exoskeleton is still fragile, so if they get dropped, they will surely get injured.
4. Check The Enclosure Of Your Female Tarantula
If your escapee is a male tarantula, the first spot to check is the enclosure of your female tarantula, if you have one. Chances are, your male T is hanging out near the enclosure of your female T and is still figuring out a way to get to her.
A lot of owners found out that when their male T escaped, they are usually found near the enclosure of their female Ts.
5. Put Out A Water Bowl
If you still have not found your tarantula, then you can coax him out of his hiding place. Just remember to block off all the exits just to make sure that your tarantula is still in the same room.
There will come a time that they need to rehydrate, so what you can do is to put a shallow water dish on the ground and put a sponge on it. Your tarantula will try to get to it in order to drink.
For some owners, they put wet paper towels on the floor so that the tarantula will be on plain sight once it comes out.
6. Look For Them At Night
Tarantulas are nocturnal, therefore, they are more active at nighttime. This will be the perfect time to look for them as they might have left their hiding place to hunt for food.
Make sure to keep the room dark, so as not to spook your tarantula. Also, use a flashlight to work your way around the room. Be careful while walking as you might step on your T!
7. Notify Your Household
If days passed and you still cannot locate your tarantula, make sure that you notify your household of your escapee. In this way, they will always be on the lookout for your missing tarantula (in the event that it managed to leave the original room where itwas kept)
It is also a good thing to tell your neighbors, just in case your tarantula got out of the house.
As simple as this may seem, there are a lot of owners who found their tarantula in their neighbor’s home, and informing them beforehand helps in safeguarding your T rather than letting the neighbors deal with him.
8. Carefully Catch Your Tarantula
Once you find your tarantula, you should be careful when catching him. As it is full of excitement, his defense mechanism is on the high so if you approach him with bare hands, then it may fling some hairs at you.
Always approach your tarantula with caution so that you are protected and it will get back to his enclosure safely.
How To Prevent Your Tarantula From Escaping
Here are some tips on how you can prevent your tarantula from escaping:
Put all your tarantulas in one room. Doing this will lead your escaped tarantula to just hang out in one room, especially if you also have female tarantulas.
They will first check out the enclosures of your other Ts, before moving on to explore the room, further increasing your chances of finding him later on.
Always close the door or the lid securely. Sometimes, when you are in a haste, you can forget. So always check if the door is shut tight.
If the lid tends to be loose, you can use some objects to weigh it down. You can use a book or a paperweight.
You can make use of clips and locks so that the door will remain closed. There are enclosures that come with this type of mechanism.
Give specific instructions to other people when you are going to be away. They should know how to properly close the enclosure, as well as what to do when your T escapes.
Were you able to find your tarantula?
Let us know in the comment section below if you were able to find your tarantula with our tips! Was he/she okay when you found him/her? Where have you found your T? Looking forward to reading your stories!