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Housing

1. Tarantulas, scorpions, millipedes, centipedes, roaches, etc. love hiding in the cardboard roll of paper towels, and toilet paper. (for roaches, press the top and bottom together, because they like low ceilings and for burrowing species of scorpions and tarantulas, make a paper towel roll slant into the substrate)

2. Another hiding spot scorpions and tarantulas like is the end of a tissue box cut off so that there is an opening when placed on the substrate, and the actual side of the tissue box now turns into a roof.

3. When housing myriopods (millipedes and centipedes), a good rule of thumb is to keep the tank twice as long, and at least as wide as the specimen.

4. Most centipedes are fast and aggressive (not to mention expensive), so it is smart to put the centipede tank inside another tank for maximum security. You wouldn't want an aggressive, potentially venomous invertebrate loose in the house now, would you?

5. The best way to simulate a cave for a tarantula, scorpion, etc. is to cut a coconut in half as best you can, then cut an opening on the side of the half, and put the coconut half on the ground so that it forms a dome with the opening on the side accessible to the "bug". Suddenly, your pet has a dark, sturdy retreat that it will feel comfortable in.

Humidity

1. Many people like to keep their pet in a "Kritter Keeper", "Pet-Pal", or any other small plastic tank with a plastic ventilation cover. For any arachnid or insect species that needs high humidity, and is housed in a container like this, cover the top of the tank with plastic wrap about as much as your particular species needs (for example, a tarantula that needs, let's say, 80% humidity, you'd cover the tank 80%) to keep that much humidity in.

2. Right before a tarantula is about to molt (you can tell by sluggish behavior, duller coloration, and refusing to eat), you should keep the tank more humid than normal, for easiest molting. Also, try not to bother the tarantula, and don't feed it, or take the molt out of the tank for at least a week.

3. A cheap and efficient housing container for most invertebrates (except for species that need much ventilation like mantids and stick insects) are the clear plastic "Rubbermaid" containers. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and save more money and space than traditional tanks bought from pet shops. Many professional keepers and breeders use these containers instead of tanks bought at pet shops for those reasons. Just don't forget to add air holes.

Breeding

1. A good method of breeding aggressive species of invertebrates is to place a screen in the middle of a tank, and put the female on one end of the tank, and the male on the other. They should perform mating through the screen. This way the larger individual can't eat the smaller one, yet they can breed successfully.

2. If you are starting a cockroach colony (very popular food items for large tarantulas), make sure that the tank is kept in a dark, warm, and moist place. The more cramped the roaches are, believe it or not, the more likely they are to breed. Throw in some cardboard egg cartons, and paper towel rolls so that they don't get stressed out. Using this method, breeding cockroaches should come at a more rapid rate.

Purchasing

1. Many times Reptile Shows will have at least one stand selling tarantulas at low prices. Take advantage! Check out the listing of reptile shows in the Resources page to find upcoming shows.

2. Before buying any arachnid or insect, ask if the invertebrate is from the wild, or captivity. If it is captive-bred, then most likely it is healthy. If it is from the wild, ask if it is a new arrival, or a long-term captive. Long-term captives are usually O.K. also, but if it was just captured from the wild, you don't know if it is healthy, or how it will adapt to captivity, so be careful.

 
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