|Tarantula's molted skin|
As a reasonably iron-clad rule, all of our education animals are native. But keeping spiders alive longer than a year is not easy so in the year 2000 we decided to make an exception and buy a Chilean rose-haired tarantula to show students when we talk about Arachnids. What I like to refer to as "spiderology."
Why? Well, tarantulas at easy to care for, they are large and easy to see and they live a long time.
Now, 13 years later our oldest tarantula is still alive. Plus, as spider grow, they have to periodically shed their old tight outer skin. Last week was a cause to celebrate at the nature center. Both of our tarantulas decided it was time to sloth off the old and unveil the new. A rare conjunction of events since we think the last time the older one went through the arduous process of molting was two years ago.
-Story and photo by Stephen Lyn Bales.