• Avicularia purpurea (Ecuadorean Purple Pinktoe) - Care Sheets

      Subfamily: Aviculariinae
      Genus: Avicularia
      Species: purpurea
      Common Name: Equador Purple Pinktoe
      Described by: Kirk
      Year of Discovery: 1990
      Country: Ecuador
      Tarantula World: New World

      Their Natural Habitat:
      Arboreal. Typically found in trees in cattle fields and such.Avicularia purpurea are known to be communal in the wild, and some claim they can be kept as communals in captivity. They live in the trees with vertical tube webs under bark with the entrances at the bottom, often in solitary trees in cattle fields.

      This species is considered to be docile. Please keep in mind that although each species have their stereotype temperament, individual spiders can exhibit temperaments that vary significantly from the norm. I have never seen my girl flick hairs, throw a threat pose, much less bite me or try. I do understand that these, and most Avicularia species, do not flick hairs so much as rub them into predators. As slings, they can be fast-moving and mine would readily jump. This is one of only two spiders in my collection (over 50 through the years) that will drink out of the palm of my hand.
      Classified as medium to fast growth rate. Reach 4.5”.
      Experience Level:
      Intermediate (due to its delicate requirements of humidity and ventilation).
      75°- 86°F according to their native climate. I keep mine between 80° and 85°F.

      High humidity. These are tropical species so they need higher humidity. I have been told they should not be allowed to have humidity lower than 80%. I mist my girl's tank walls a few times a week. As slings, these are particularly delicate spiders, and have a reputation (even more than the general Avicularia genus) to die without warning or reason. In my experience, they need a tricky balance of high humidity and ventilation, especially as slings. The ventilation is to prevent molds from growing in the tank (as big a killer as dehydration with this species). Older juvies and adults are more hardy, but definitely still need humidity in the cage.

      As an arboreal species these need more vertical space than horizontal. I house mine in a home-made plexi tank that is 8”x8” floor space and 12” vertical. This is likely the smallest size tank (I should upgrade to a larger tank). Provide a branch or something to climb on, though they may take to the walls of the enclosure. A vertical corkbark leaned against the cage offers a location for purpureas to make their tube webs behind. Mine readily makes a tube web in the top corner of the tank that she spends more time in as she gets closer to a molt, usually sealing off the two or three entrances a few weeks before molting.

      EcoEarth (coconut husk). You may make a mix of Vermiculite and Eco Earth (75/25). From my experience, Peat Moss does cultivate molds very easily, and thus would not be recommended for this species. Avoid any Evergreen woods (Cypress, Reptile Bark) inside of the enclosure. Evergreens contain natural insecticidal oils that can harm your tarantula if exposed long enough. Isopods (rolly-polies, or pillbugs) are a good cleaner to keep in the substrate that will help reduce the risk of mold, but they require moisture. You need to watch out for mold in the tank as purpureas do not handle mold well.

      Crickets, meal worms, waxworms, super worms, Blaptica dubia or Blatta lateralis roaches. Please do not offer wild caught prey, as it may contain pesticides (and potential parasites) which can harm or kill your Tarantula. Also never feed your tarantula “kingworms” (giant meal worms) as these are mealvworms that have been fed juvenile growth hormones to prevent them from maturing so they grow bigger. JGH are a common insecticide and would not be good for your invertebrate tarantula! (I received this from a personal conversation with a cricket/worm breeder near me). Furthermore, crickets and roaches are the best nutrition for tarantulas, and mealworms and superworms should be fed as treats, not as a staple.

      Make sure to offer a water bowl, the size should be half the size of the species. Do not use any sponges, cotton balls or paper towel or water crystals inside of water bowl, just clean water. Small rocks may be added. If possible, mount the bowl higher in the tank rather than sitting it on the floor. I have hot-glued the bowl onto a branch halfway up the tank. Clean the water bowl once a week or when you feel it is necessary. Crickets or roaches may end up dead in the water, in which case you should clean it right away. Spiderlings are too small to have a water bowl, misting one side of the enclosure wall 1-2 times a week, should be plenty enough. Your tarantula will often fill the dish with substrate, or even poop in it, but continue to provide clean water. Also I periodically wet the substrate, allowing that to dry out completely to prevent mold growth. Moisture and humidity is important for this species.
      Females can live up to 12 years, while males may live 3 years.
      Maturity female:
      2-4 years depending on how often they are fed and how warm their enclosure is kept.
      Maturity male/ Tibial Apophysis:
      1-2 years, which is only an estimate. / Yes, on first set of leg.
      Communal Setup:
      Not recommended for this species, though this has been done with little cannibalism.

      Color Markings:
      The Avicularia purpurea tarantula is one of the most colorful tarantulas in the world. Slings look like a colorless version of the A. versicolor slings,while adults are a deep black that shows up a deep purple in bright light.This is a striking and beautiful tarantula. Colors are most vivid immediately after a molt.

      Special Note:
      These tarantulas are moderately difficult to breed. Females lay egg sacs containing roughly 50 to 100 eggs a few months after mating. Nymphs hatch 68 weeks later. There is a low risk of males being eaten by the females during pairings. Make sure never to keep a tarantula enclosure directly in the sun. No light is necessary for your tarantula's habitat. Natural lighting is perfectly fine.

      Read more about them on our fan club page:
      CITES List
      These are not on the CITES II list (as far as I can see), but captive-bred specimens are available.
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      Handling tarantulas with potent venom is not advised or endorsed by this forum. In certain cases of envenomation, hospitalization has been required. Please use caution when dealing with these species.
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      Comments 1 Comment
      1. Ranchibi's Avatar
        Ranchibi -
        Stunning lil avics! Wonderful Care Sheet ManlyMan7! Thank you