While we all love animals and nature to the extent of spending the rest of our life with some of these animals as pets, very few people would think of a spider as an intelligent and friendly pet. Pet jumping spiders are very unique in appearance. They also have a very unique personality and a friendly character which makes them adorable to pet owners.
When I first got my digital camera, I noticed that jumping spiders can work along easily as if they understood that it’s a photoshoot. It’s as if they understood I wanted them to pose and stay at different locations and positions for the photos. Besides being adorable, friendly, and intelligent spiders, most people still lack sufficient information about them.
I’ve been receiving queries and questions from potential jumping spider owners about their care and what’s the best jumping spider to keep as a pet. This inspired me to create this brief that combines knowledge and gives answers to some of these questions.
Jumping spiders Introduction
Upon the first look, arachnids would send chills down in most women and kids whenever they are encountered. They often have hairy appendages stretching from their body and some unique set of forward-facing eyes. Their unexpected behavior and a lot of myths available out there would leave someone wondering if they can interact with them at home as pets.
Furthermore, most people consider jumping spiders to be annoying insects and pests. To get that out of your head, I want to clear the air by sharing more information about Jumping spiders. Jumping spiders are classified as arachnids, which means that they don’t belong to the insect family.
The main difference between a spider and an insect would automatically be their body. Remember insects have three body parts while spiders have two. Moving on, spiders have more legs than insects. Spiders have eight legs while insects have six legs. Besides these physical appearances, spiders can spin their webs while insects don’t have such ability. Lastly, insects can fly while spiders cannot.
Jumping spiders seem a little intimidating especially because you cannot predict their next move. Humans have for years considered all types of spiders to be a nuisance. We were taught that spiders are very alien-like and we should avoid them at all costs. The only thing most know is that all spiders are creepy and poisonous and we should at all cost not get in contact with them.
People today now know that not all spiders are dangerous and poisonous. The Jumping spiders, for example, don’t usually bite and they are very safe to be kept as pets. They actually flee from danger rather than attack. However, if they feel threatened or in danger, they can defend themselves by biting. They never intend to bite humans and they cannot even when given an opportunity draw blood from humans. Jumping spiders get their food from smaller insects that can fit in their mouth.
For those and many other reasons, Jumping spiders are being sought after as pets. The public is starting to understand that jumping spiders are adorable and very friendly.
What are the best Pet Jumping spiders to own?
Before we delve deeper, let’s educate each other on the different types of pet Jumping spiders. The fact is that there are many hybrid and variants of jumping spiders. Will just discuss the top 5 Best Jumping spider pet species that you can keep today as pets.
Lets get started!
Phidippus Regius – Regal Jumping spider
This is one of the largest species of Jumping spiders that you can find in North America. It can easily be seen in trees and walls of buildings. You can easily identify the Regal Jumping spider because they usually have a black base and a unique pattern of stripes and white spots. Female Regal Jumping spider, on the other hand, has a somewhat similar pattern but the colors are either gray or orange.
The Regal Jumping Spider of North America gets its food from insects and small crickets. The male spider will head to nests and sleep in them during the night. The females will on the other hand lay their eggs under trees and other areas such as the barns.
This species of jumping spider can easily be recognized for its eye arrangement. The eyes of this type of spider are arranged in three rows. The first containing four eyes, another two eyes, and two other smaller lateral eyes. The second row of the eyes contains two tiny eyes and the 3rd row has two small eyes. Another physical attribute that can help you recognize the spider is its size. It’s actually the largest spider in this class.
Regal Jumping spider Habitats and Habits
This type of Jumping spider is more likely to be found in fields and open woodland habitats. It might not live in a mature hardwood forest. But the smaller and younger Phidippus regius spider will be found in the herbaceous zones. The adults usually favor palmettoes in semiarid areas and palms. If the palms are absent, they can head to shrubs and trees.
This type of spider uses its eyes to spot and track its prey. It can equally use the eyes to spot potential mates. Once the prey is noticed and targeted, the spider will jump on it. The P. regius also uses the silken nests with ellipsoid structures to rest during the nights. It can lay eyes here and also molt. The juveniles normally make their nests rolled with leaves at the tops of herbs. The adult males can be found together with subadults and occasional adult females for mating.
The females make thick silken nests in various trees but mostly pines and oak where they lay their eyes. If they are in houses, adult females hide in spaces and cracks looking for potential shelter for nests and eggs. The females are very likely to lay about four batches of eggs with the first batch containing about 183 eggs. The number of eggs per batch declines with subsequent batches.
The Phidippus regius feeds on a wide variety of insects and other arthropods. The small and immature spiders will feed on Diptera. The Juveniles and adults will feed on large Orthoptera and Hemiptera and Larvae.
The Phidippus regius is very common in Peninsular Florida. More people are considering this spider as a pet in major towns and cities in the USA. The first impression of this type of spider was of a large, black and hairy spider.
How to care for your first Phidippus regius
Chances are you are here because you’ve considered keeping Phidippus regius Jumping spider as a pet. To set up and get started, you will need a simple beginning checklist. Most pet owners are tempted to keep a large enclosure with bioactive substrates and lots of decorations which is not always a good idea. It pays if you have a simple enclosure even if the spider is large. The enclosure can be a plastic cup turned upside down. It is good to keep a lid on the bottom of the enclosure because it allows you to open the enclosure without breaking the spider web sack. You should know that this spider will create its web sack at the highest spot of the enclosure. You can equally use a plastic smoothie cup with a domed lid. In this case, you will only cover on the top of the lid with mesh.
Cross-ventilation is important-You need proper cross -ventilation, which you can easily achieve by poking small homes on all corners of the enclosure or by just creating some small holes on the opposite sides of the enclosure. The holes should be covered with a fine mesh to prevent the spider from getting out.
Most jumping spiders don’t require any hiding but you can decorate the enclosure with some fake leaves glued to the side of the tub. Just keep them simple so that you can be able to spot the spider at any time.
Humidity is very vital-You can achieve the humidity by light mist on the sides of the enclosure. You should have some small water drops for the spider to drink. The drops should not be large because they can hurt the spider. These should remain on one side of the enclosure all day if the ventilation is right.
Feeding the Phidippus regius should be one of the best parts of taking care of the spider. Food should be offered to the spider now and then. Avoid feeding the spider when it’s closed in a thick web sack because it’s getting ready to molt. You can start with fruit flies and eventually shift to larger prey over time. At a point in their lives, P. regius will stop seeing fruit flies as food and stop feeding on them. This is time to transition to bigger prey.
Hyllus Diardi – Heavy Jumper
The heavy Jumper is another very common Jumping spider pet that has gained popularity through how the spider jumps onto the prey and the impact after it lands on the prey. It’s known as the heavy Jumper because it jumps with a lot of force onto the prey. It’s very easy to discern this spider from other types because it’s covered in thick white fur. It also lives in mangrove areas and countries such as Singapore and Thailand. The diet for the heavy Jumper usually comprises crickets and flies. It’s equally a large Jumping spider.
The females are usually between 0.39 and 0.59 inches in size and males are usually smaller. Both males and females have a grayish-white body and black eyes. They have eight eyes arranged in four pairs. The eyes in front are larger. Furthermore, the eggs are laid in sacks and the sacks can vary in the number of eggs.
The bite of Hyllus Diardi can be painful and leave a welt-like mark on the skin but the venom is not fatal to humans. However, the venom can paralyze prey and at the same time kill small insects.
Caring for Hyllus diardi
Caring for Hyllus Diardi, unlike other spiders, can be a bit daunting. Most people have claimed that immediately after buying the Hyllus Diardi, the pet gets depressed and minimizes movement. Some people claim that the spider didn’t move much inside the terrarium. According to observations, this type of spider may choose not to be active in darkness. So, here are some tips for caring for the Hyllus Diardi jumping spider.
Give enough light-Many people claim that this type of spider might not be very active if the enclosure or the room is too dark. If this is the case, then you might have to get a better and well-lit enclosure. This can be a glass enclosure. However, avoid lamps that can heat the enclosure. The enclosure should not get too hot or too lit. Most pet owners choose a full spectrum aquarium light such as corals which produce light similar to sunlight without causing significant temperature change to the enclosure and the room.
Watering and Feeding – Just like other animals Hyllus Diardi need enough water and food for their diets. You should be very careful with spraying water directly on the spiders. Remember spiders breathe through the book lungs that are underneath their abdomen. The spider should also be fed at least thrice a week.
Check to be sure that the spider is well hydrated and fed. It must have a plump abdomen. The females are likely to eat more food than their male counterparts. If the Hyllus Diardi doesn’t show any interest in the prey or doesn’t eat at all, get the prey out of the enclosure immediately. Try to feed the spider some cockroaches, insects, and crickets. But remember some of the big prey can bite and kill the spider. This means that you should never leave your Hyllus Diardi unattended with some big prey. Feed her wax worms, micro mealworms, Houseflies, and many other insects.
Hyllus Diardi Moulting – if the pet is well fed and hydrated, it will molt its exoskeleton once every three weeks because it’s a crucial stage in growth and development. The pet will most probably make a molting hammock which will be a bit thicker. Never force the pet out of their hammocks because it can be fatal to the spider. Remember complications during molting can be fatal to Hyllus Diardi.
Temperatures – Its also very important to maintain the right temperatures especially if you want your pet to be comfortable and healthy. Hyllus Diardi should be at room temperatures of 27-30c and a Humidity of between 80-90. This species needs higher humidity and for that reason, you should use a substrate that should be kept damp. Other species don’t necessarily require higher humidity and for that reason, you don’t have to care about the substrates.
Ortia Labiata – White-Moustache Jumping spider
Here is another very common species and is known as the White Moustache jumping spider that is currently considered that is nothing short of adorable. Unluckily, this species is only found in Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Hava, Burma, Southern China, India, Philipines, and few other countries of the world.
Unlike the above two species, this is a medium-sized spider coated in sparse white hair. This is actually where the spider got its nickname from. They usually feed on webbed spiders, insects, and smaller jumping spiders. The good thing about these spiders is that they can adapt to any type of environment within a very short time. They can easily remember their previous hunting skills and can adapt to hunting easily. Lastly, the hunting style of the Portia Labiata is more versatile and flexible just like that of some big animals like the Lion. Unlike few other spiders, this species is araneophagic, meaning it preys on other spiders.
They perform silk manipulating behavior and usually walk onto the webs to prey on other spiders. The species has a behavior that produces the vibrations on the web attracting the other spider that would automatically think that prey is captured. The host spider will be lured to a preying range and will be attacked by Portia Labiata.
With that information, it’s very easy to notice that Portia Labiata are intelligent hunters and can take advantage of background noise including the blowing wind on the web. The blowing wind is used as a smokescreen against the web-building spider. The natural disturbances caused by the wind will mask the movement of the spider and it will attack the web-Building spider without notice. All these strategies are used in capturing other spiders and not any other type of prey.
As I stated above Portia Labiata White Moustache jumping spider can eat other insects but its main diet is made up of web-building spiders. The Portia Labiata can stalk insects and attack them with ease. It can reach the insect and attack it through the forelegs. Portia Labiata can as well use their forelegs to test the chemical defences of the prey.
Portia Labiata are often found in the less dense forest especially where there are higher ambient light levels. There are chances that these spiders can be found in highly distributed areas especially oil palm plantations. Their webs are found fastened on the flexible stems and leaves on shrubs and branches especially those lower branches.
Is the Portia Labiata spider poisonous?
Being in the category of Jumping spiders, the White Moustache spider are poisonous but they only bite when provoked or threatened. Although the venom can be fatal to insects and other spiders, it’s not toxic to humans and larger animals. What this means is that you shouldn’t fear anything with this spider. It can be kept as a pet for its unique characteristic such as being friendly and lovable.
Taking care of Portia Labiata jumping spider
There’s nothing unique about taking care of Portia Labiata and other spiders. However, remember this spider’s diet is mainly comprised of other spiders. For that reason, it should be fed some spiders from time to time. Here are additional tips on caring for Portia Labiata as a pet.
Catching the Portia Labiata-When it comes to catching Portia Labiata for a pet, there are few things you should know. The first point is where to get the spider. Unlike other species that are found in America, Portia Labiata is mainly found in Sri Lanka, Southern China, India, Malaysia, and few other countries. So, catching the spider in America can be a challenge. The best way to catch Portia Labiata is by the use of a cup or a small container. Just use one hand to catch the spider and avoid grabbing or plucking at the spider because you might upset or injure it.
The House-The process of setting a Home for White Moustache spider shouldn’t be complicated. You should use small transparent containers for your home. Its also very important to make sure that the container is well lit, and ventilated. If you have a lot of Free time, you can play with your spider sometimes. For very busy people and those that will not find enough time to play with the spider, you should use a relatively larger container to give the spider enough space to move and Play.
Feeding and watering Portia Labiata-You are supposed to try to feed your spider some insects at least once in 2-3 days. In this case, you should equally feed her with other spiders. But remember most spiders including Portia Labiata don’t like ants and several other larger prey. Some prey can attack the spider and so you shouldn’t leave it unattended. Additionally, spiders breathe with book lungs in their abdomen and so you shouldn’t block them when watering. What this means is that you shouldn’t pour water directly on the pet. White Moustache spiders actually needs small droplets of water every day and it would be important to use misting bottles.
Cohabitation and mating-always avoid mixing this spider with other species because it can easily eat them. If the spider has to mate, you should bring a similar species to mate with. I suggest putting different spider species in different enclosures. The females can store sperms for almost a year which means that the female you captured may give birth.
Cosmophasis Umbratica – Shiny Jumping spider
This jumping spider got the nickname, the shiny jumping spider from its physical appearances. The spider can reflect UV from the sun during a UV interaction throughout its body. When the spider is exposed to UV light, it displays extreme dimorphism. This is actually regarded as a rare phenomenon of sexual signalling that is very common with butterflies.
The shiny Jumping spider is found in India and Sumatra but it can easily adapt to all new environments. You can easily find the species on plants that are openly exposed to sunlight in the late mornings and afternoons especially where the sun is the hottest. Their diets revolve around smaller insects and animals such as flies and ants.
As I’ve already stated, the Cosmophasis Umbratica has a dimorphic behavior when exposed to UV light. The male spiders will reflect the UV on the entire body but females do not. This behavior is very common during the mating sessions. The Cosmophasis Umbratica has four main movements which are bobbing of the abdomen, lunging, drumming of palps, and skittering.
One unique thing about this species is that they don’t traditionally spin webs like many other species. When hunting, they have adopted a ”stalk and leap’; strategy because they have extensive eye depth and a very powerful vision. The species has actually been regarded as the tigers of spiders. Their nests are made of viscid silk where the spiders can rest and retreat. . You can easily confuse their nests with sheets made of silk with tubes on both sides. The nests have wide openings with narrow entry points and they host both the male and females. But the females will most likely seal their doors much more than the males.
The vision for this spider species is the main contributor to hunting. Their visual system is very complex and it acts as a guide when it comes to hunting and catching the prey. The spider can actually recognize prey up to 30 feet away. The Cosmophasis Umbratica has another type of eyes that makes them easily notice objects above this range. This strong vision allows the spiders to escape predators and at the same time be able to catch long-range preys.
The spiders can mate and keep the sperms in their bodies until the female is ready to fertilize and lay eggs. The female Cosmophasis Umbratica will create a sac made of silk to protect the eggs throughout the development stage. This behavior is very common with spiders. The eggs will stay inside the sac until fertilization takes place. The mother can lay eggs anywhere as long as she’s convinced it is safe from predation and other forms of dangers.
Another unique thing with this species is that the female can stay with the eggs until the eggs hatch. This is a strategy to protect the eggs. Another important thing to note about Cosmophasis Umbratica is that the males mature faster than the females. The males start hunting for a suitable female earlier. Skittering is one of the main ways of attracting the female. The females will easily be attracted to the level of excitement that the males exhibit.
How can I take care of Cosmophasis Umbratica jumping spiders as pets?
Just like other species, the Cosmophasis Umbratica makes for a good spider pet for its ease of interacting with the people, their friendly and adorable character. For that reason, the methods of taking care of this spider would essentially be the same as the other species explained above. Here are additional tips to take care of pet Cosmophasis Umbratica.
Catching Cosmophasis Umbratica-These spiders can be found in many areas. A few of the spiders are venomous and so you should be very sure of the spider you are about to catch. Luckily Cosmophasis Umbratica is not a venomous spider and it might not attack you. Gently coach this spider in your enclosure.
Feeding and watering-This spider is known as nectivorous meaning that it can feed on the sweet nectar of the ixora plant. The spider can equally feed on ants and other insects including crickets and flies. For that reason, you should know what to feed the spider any time of the week. It’s also important to avoid feeding the spider any insects that are big or that can injure the spider. In some situations, ants and cockroaches can attack and kill the spider. Feed few drops of water to the spider and make sure the water hasn’t blocked the book lungs in the abdomen.
Housing-The spider can be housed on a glass enclosure with enough light. I specifically explained that this spider has a unique method of reflecting the light to attract females. For that reason, allow some natural light to enter. Additionally, you should make sure the enclosure is well ventilated.
Observing-as a pet owner, watch the pet and take notes of its behavior. This can give you some insights into hunger and other perspectives that might be very important to you.
Chrysilla Lauta – Elegant Golden Jumping Spider
The last spider species we’re going to discuss in this brief is the elegant golden jumping spider that got the nickname from how it jumps. The spider can be found in rainforests from Vietnam, China, Myanmar, Singapore, and Burma. The spider comes in shades of red, blue, and yellow around the thorax. The majority of the spider’s body is coated with a hue golden bronze. Its diet mainly consists of smaller insects, smaller spiders, and fruit fries.
The male spider is very slender and has an orange-red and a narrow bluish-white color. They have an iridescent transverse stripe between the eyes. Another unique thing is that the chelicerae don’t point forward. The scutum of the opisthosoma is dark brown and is covered with dense bronze-colored hairs. It has long legs that are brownish-yellow in color. The first pair and the last segment of the legs are brown.
Caring for pet Chrysilla Lauta Jumping spider
Capturing Chrysilla Lauta Jumping spider-The first step of this is to capture the spider. Most spiders can get irritated and defensive when disturbed. Besides the fact that this species cannot bite and cause severe injuries to a human being, you shouldn’t provoke the spider. You can use a beating stick to capture the spider. Use a medium length stick as you hunt for spiders. The stick can be used to whack vegetation but you should remember that the vibrations can provoke the spider or even make it hide.
Use the vial to capture the spider-You will automatically need something to capture the spider after catching it and vials are excellent choices. It’s important to carry several vials with you and make sure they are at least 2 inches and glass or plastic vials can work.
Create a safe environment for the spider-Jumping spiders can survive in a couple of environments but you should ensure every time they’re safe. The room has to be safe and has enough room to jump. It’s important to choose a container that is at least a cubic foot in size. The lid should be ventilated with small holes and another thing to note is that most jumping spiders don’t spin webs but they enjoy resting in little nests and for that reason, you should provide material for the spider to make a bed. This can be a small piece of cloth. Lastly, the cage should be kept away from direct sunlight because the spider can overheat.
Chrysilla Lauta Jumping spider eats nectar and a couple of insects. To start, feed the spider with small crickets and flies. You can purchase the food from stores if you cannot collect it on your own. The spider doesn’t need to eat every day and if possible, feed it once in 2-3 days. Just mist the sides of the cage using a spray bottle because spiders don’t need a lot of water.
Interacting with your spider-Most jumping spiders don’t like being touched or handled. This means you should avoid trying to handle the spider. You can use a piece of cloth if you need to move the spider rather than wanting to handle him.
Can you Buy a Jumping spider? Where to Buy different species of Jumping spiders
Depending on the species of the spider you want to keep as a pet, you might have to search different places to catch the spider. Luckily, there are several places where you can Buy specific species of pet jumping spiders.
Checking online, you can find many Regal jumping spiders for sale. Most stores offer a Live arrival guarantee and several other benefits that you should utilize any time of the day. Here are different places to buy Jumping spiders for pets.
The first place where you can check for specific pet spider species is here. The spiders come with a Live arrival guarantee and a couple of other benefits such as containers, food, and other caring materials. The company usually ships Jumping spiders Mondays and Wednesdays when the overnight temperatures are over 0c.
However, if you want any species of a spider to be shipped to other parts of the world such as the EU, you should wait longer because of Covid-19 restrictions. The company will offer you a plastic cup to make sure the specific species gets the best start in life.
World of Phids
Worldofphids.com is another site where you can buy jumping spiders and at the same time get a jumping spider care sheet. You can easily adopt a furry phid within a very short period. The site features some of the most beautiful species that are kept by spider lovers. The main focus of this site is to help you care for jumping spiders at home.
You might be surprised to find that you can buy any species of a Jumping spider from this site and at the same time get all the materials from containers to any other care kit. The site sells some of the most intelligent and adorable species of jumping spiders.
Do Jumping Spiders make good pets?
Yes, Jumping spiders make very enjoyable and engaging pets for their intelligence and love. They usually love interacting with their owners and for this friendly character, they make to be some of the best pets especially for lonely people.
What is the best pet spider to have?
If you want to get one of the best spider pets, then you should start with Tarantula such as Mexican Redleg, Chilean Rose, or Costa Rican zebra. The main reason is that they aren’t venomous and they are docile when you compare them with other species.
Why do Jumping spiders look at you?
All spiders are active hunters and for that reason, they usually use their eyes to notice and track their prey. They are very likely to look at you in an attempt to determine whether something is suitable for prey.
Why do jumping spiders explode?
The body of spiders is filled with a pressurized liquid that helps the spider to move and perform other purposes. Furthermore, the working of the brain of a spider is elusive up to now and whenever scientists try to peer into it, the spider explodes.
You might be surprised at how good jumping spiders can make of a pet. These creatures are very intelligent and are easily lovable and can provide much-needed enjoyment. I’ve listed and explained the Top 5 Best Jumping spider pet species that you can buy or capture and keep as pets. Follow the care tips for different species if you want to provide the best for these adorable pets.