Tarantulas are common among exotic pet lovers. They are aggressive eaters and are easy to care fir. However, there are many species of tarantula, each with their own characteristics. Seven of the most common types of pet tarantulas are the Brazilian black, Brazilian black and white, Chilean rose hair, cobalt blue, Costa Rican zebra, Goliath bird eating tarantula and the green bottle blue.
Brazilian black tarantulas are among the easiest to keep for inexperienced spider owners. These spiders are large (leg spans of 5 to 6 inches), calm and completely black. Brazilian black tarantulas need only be fed twice a week and can live up to 20 years. It should be noted, however, that males will live significantly shorter lives.
Brazilian Black and White
These tarantulas are a bit larger than the Brazilian blacks with a leg span of 6 to 8 inches. They are highly sought after and expensive in the United States because of their black bodies and bright white stripes. Brazilian black and whites are aggressive and should not be handled. This species should eat a combination of crickets and pinky mice.
Chilean Rose Hair
Often referred to as simply the rose hair tarantula, this spider is one of the most inexpensive and accessible tarantulas. The Chilean rose hair is extremely docile and easy to handle. Most pet stores carry this type of spider, and it requires little care once home. Rose hair tarantulas can live in a small cage with a diet consisting of crickets, mealworms or waxworms.
The cobalt blue tarantula is notable for its aggressive nature and speed. It is not recommended for inexperienced owners and should be handled rarely. Despite its extreme temperament, the cobalt blue tarantula is a beautiful specimen. Its slim body is an iridescent blue, and its legs can reach about 5 inches. Cobalt blues require at least 5 inches of bedding and feeder insects twice a week.
Costa Rican Zebra
Costa Rican zebra tarantulas are beautiful brown spiders with cream-coloured bands around their legs. They can grow to a leg span of 5 inches and live up to 18 years. Females will outlive males. Although Costa Rican zebra tarantulas are passive in nature, they are also skittish and should be handled carefully or not at all.
No doubt one of the most impressive of all the pet spiders, the Goliath bird-eating tarantula can reach leg spans of up to 12 inches. Its body is anything but lean and is light to medium brown in colour. This tarantula is the largest species in the world with a temperament to match. This spider is extremely aggressive and should not be handled by even experienced tarantula owners. Because of its size, the Goliath needs a large tank and shelter in which to live. It should be fed primarily crickets and grasshoppers, but a few times a month it should be offered mice for a rounded diet.
Green Bottle Blue
Green bottle blue tarantulas are true to their name. They are an extremely colourful species of tarantula originating in Venezuela. With bright blue legs, an orange body and a docile temperament, this spider is a beautiful addition to any collection. The green bottle blue is fairly easy to maintain as well. It requires very little substrate lining its enclosure and a diet of crickets and mealworms. The green bottle blue will grow to between 4 and 6 inches depending on its sex.