Molecular Biology and Genetics
Statistics of barcoding coverage
Specimens with Sequences:16
Specimens with Barcodes:5
Species With Barcodes:9
The species are native to Mexico and neighboring countries of Central America. Habitat destruction and pet-trade collection has led these spiders to be among the few arthropods protected under the international CITES laws (Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species). They are docile tarantulas which are easy to keep in a terrarium. The most famous species in this genus are the Mexican redknee tarantula B. smithi, curlyhair B. albopilosum, and the Mexican redrump B. vagans. They feed on smaller invertebrates and occasionally vertebrates, but while insects are the norm, they may also eat lizards or frogs. These species, like most tarantulas are cannibalistic, so in captivity, individuals must be kept singly, though brief captive introductions of a mate for breeding purposes can prove unproblematic, so long as they are separated once mating has occurred.
These spiders are relatively slow growing compared to other tarantulas, and have impressive life spans of around 20 years for females. After hatching from a clutch that may vary from 300 to 1200+ eggs, the spiderlings will molt every two weeks for the first few months, then less and less frequently as they mature. A full-grown Brachypelma may molt as infrequently as once a year. These tarantulas reach sexual maturity at the age of around five years.
Large spiders used in Hollywood movies (e.g. Indiana Jones, The Mummy Returns) are often Brachypelma smithi or Brachypelma emilia because they are very docile, though the much less expensive and only moderately more aggressive Chilean rose tarantula is frequently used as well. While it is almost unheard of for a Brachypelma to bite a human, they are quick to kick urticating hairs in self-defense, though their hairs can be less irritating than those of other species, especially the goliath birdeater
- Brachypelma albiceps Pocock, 1903 — Mexican golden red rump tarantula (Mexico)
- Brachypelma albopilosum Valerio, 1980 — Honduran curlyhair or Curlyhair tarantula (Costa Rica)
- Brachypelma andrewi Schmidt, 1992
- Brachypelma angustum Valerio, 1980 — (Costa Rica)
- Brachypelma annitha Tesmoingt, Cleton & Verdez, 1997 — (Mexico)
- Brachypelma auratum Schmidt, 1992 — Mexican flameknee (Mexico)
- Brachypelma aureoceps (Chamberlin, 1917) — (USA, probably introduced)
- Brachypelma baumgarteni Smith, 1993 — Mexican orange beauty (Mexico)
- Brachypelma boehmei Schmidt & Klaas, 1993 — Mexican fireleg or Mexican rustleg tarantula (Mexico)
- Brachypelma embrithes (Chamberlin & Ivie, 1936) — (Panama)
- Brachypelma emilia (White, 1856) — Mexican redleg or red-legged tarantula (Mexico)
- Brachypelma epicureanum (Chamberlin, 1925) — (Mexico)
- Brachypelma fossorium Valerio, 1980 — (Costa Rica)
- Brachypelma hamorii Tesmoingt, Cleton & Verdez, 1997 — (Mexico)
- Brachypelma kahlenbergi Rudloff, 2008 — (Mexico)
- Brachypelma klaasi (Schmidt & Krause, 1994) — Mexican pink (Mexico)
- Brachypelma sabulosum (F. O. P.-Cambridge, 1897) — (Guatemala)
- Brachypelma schroederi Rudloff, 2003 — (Mexico)
- Brachypelma smithi (F. O. P.-Cambridge, 1897) — Mexican red-kneed tarantula (Mexico)
- Brachypelma vagans (Ausserer, 1875) — Mexican red rump or Mexican black velvet (Mexico, Central America)
- Brachypelma verdezi Schmidt, 2003 — (Mexico)
EOL content is automatically assembled from many different content providers. As a result, from time to time you may find pages on EOL that are confusing.
To request an improvement, please leave a comment on the page. Thank you!