Brachypelma Hamorii Mexican Red Knee
Diagonal Leg Span (DLS): 5.5” (14cm)
Growth Rate: Medium - Slow
Life Expectancy: Females 25-30 years / Males 10 years
Recommended Experience Level: Beginner
In my opinion one the most beautiful beginner species. The care is easy. This species is even a Hollywood star species. Many movies have used them for filming such as Indiana Jones.
Enclosures for spiderlings are small acrylic boxes filled halfway with substrate. I usually use coco fiber, creature soil, or a mix. I keep the substrate slightly damp. I provide a hide and plenty of depth so they can burrow. I provide a small water dish if there is room or drip a little water on the web or side of the enclosure a couple times a week. When they outgrow that enclosure I move them into my juvenile terrestrial enclosures which are usually an AMAC box or something a little fancier like the Spider Shoppe/Spider Haus juvenile enclosures. I keep the enclosure filled at least halfway or more with substrate. I provide a hide, water dish, and maybe a few plastic plants for decoration. I keep the water dish full but let the substrate remain dry, occasionally overflowing the water dish. Adults, I move them into 2.5 - 5 gallon size enclosures. There is no need to go any bigger unless you want to add more decoration. I still personally go with acrylic equivalent. The enclosure should at least .5 inch if not higher with substrate so that there is no risk of the tarantula crawling up the side and falling from the top rupturing its abdomen. I mainly use coco fiber at this size as they prefer a more arid environment. Substrate dryer at this age is okay. I mist weekly during feeding and supply a water dish. I provide a hide.
Feeding, I give my slings pinhead crickets or roaches no larger than ⅔ the size of the sling. If prey is bigger; prekill the prey before dropping it in or cut mealworms and just feed them pieces. They are scavengers at this size and will typically eat pre killed prey with no issues. Remove any uneaten prey or prey pieces within 24 hours. Juveniles, I will feed 2 small or medium crickets a week. Over feeding a tarantula does not cause it to grow faster. Adults, (depending on their size) I usually feed 7 large crickets every other week. It is not uncommon for this species to go weeks or even months refusing food. They are naturally opportunistic feeders and usually only eat when prey crosses their path around their burrow. So your tarantula, especially as an adult, may not show interest in food for long periods of time. This is not a cause for concern and is normal behavior. When this happens, I just wait a couple weeks and try to feed them again. If they don't eat, I always remove the prey within 24 hours and wait a few more weeks before attempting again.
One of the most popular species in the hobby due to being so beautiful, docile and easy to care for. They can be a little bit of a hair kicker and their urticating hairs could cause itching and even a little swelling, especially if you are sensitive. Their venom is not known to be medically significant and they are much more apt to run and hide than give a threat pose or try and bite.