In our mini-series of pet tarantula types, many types of Mexican spiders have been covered. This article will focus on the Mexican Fireleg Tarantula!
These beautiful spiders offer many benefits to their owners and can make loyal and personable pets with the proper care.
In this guide, you’ll learn all about Brachypelma boehmei, from optimal habitat requirements to the best feeding sources.
We will also touch on other important care considerations to ensure your potential pet is happy and long lived.
|Common Name||Mexican Fireleg Tarantula|
|Scientific Name||Brachypelma boehmei|
|Lifespan||Males: Up to 10 years / Females: Up to 25 years|
|Adult Size||5 to 6.5 inches|
|Breeding Type||Egg Layer|
|Minimum Tank Size||10 gallons|
What Are Mexican Fireleg Tarantulas?
Mexican Fireleg Tarantulas, also known as Brachypelma boehmei in scientific circles, are a member of the family Theraphosidae and are among the most popular tarantulas kept as pets.
Native to Mexico, these tarantulas get their name from their unique coloration, which includes vibrant hues of red on the legs and abdomen.
These arboreal tarantulas are semi-docile and can become quite personable with time and proper handling.
What Do Mexican Fireleg Tarantulas Look Like?
Brachypelma boehmei is a stunning species of tarantula.
Their bodies are typically a dark chestnut brown with bright red, orange, and yellow stripe markings on their legs.
Males tend to have longer legs than females and also have hairy palps for mating. These tarantulas measure around 5 to 6.5 inches in body length.
The Mexican Fireleg Tarantula’s durable exoskeleton is especially suited for burrowing.
It is covered in silky hairs, called setae. There are two large refractory lenses on each of their eight eyes.
They also have long-articulated fangs that can be used for defense and catching prey.
During rest, these tarantulas can draw their legs close to their body to keep themselves safe.
Benefits Of Using Mexican Fireleg Tarantulas
Using a Mexican Fireleg Tarantula in a vivarium is a great way to introduce a unique and fascinating species to your home.
They bring a captivating beauty to the tank and are relatively simple to keep.
Mexican Firelegs are generally non-aggressive, so they can make a good addition to a terrarium full of other less-threatening inhabitants.
Brachypelma boehmei once has a peaceful nature, making it a great choice for people who are first-time tarantula owners.
These spiders can also provide an educational experience by watching them build their webs and displaying unique behavior.
In addition, they are an easy and affordable pet to keep, making them an ideal choice for those seeking an accessible pet.
Mexican Fireleg Tarantula Facts
Brachypelma boehmei is a medium-sized species of spider native to Southern Mexico.
They are known to be a gentle species, often unaggressive and easily handled, with a lifespan of many years in captivity.
These spiders feed mainly on prey like insects and can breed in captivity with the proper conditions.
The Mexican Fireleg Tarantula is native to Southeast Mexico and Guatemala, where it is found in humid tropical forests.
This species can mostly be seen in the Mexican states of Campeche, Veracruz, and Quintana Roo.
This spider is a terrestrial species and lives in burrows deep underground, where it builds silk structures to line the walls of its retreat.
It is usually seen at night as it searches for food in the branches and leaves of surrounding plants.
However, during the day, it may venture out of its burrow during milder weather days.
In their natural habitat, Brachypelma boehmei feeds primarily on items that crawl, like beetles, crickets, and other small insects.
In the wild, these tarantulas will feed when there is an available food source.
They are opportunistic feeders that will even eat off dead animals if they go long enough without their preferred prey.
The Mexican Fireleg Tarantula can make a good pet for someone looking for a calm and low-maintenance spider.
They are usually quite docile around humans, rarely attacking unless provoked, and they do not require as much attention and care as many other pets.
When handled they often remain motionless or flatten their legs in a defensive posture, but retreat if left unmolested.
In the wild, Mexican Fireleg Tarantulas often prefer to remain solitary.
While they can live with other tarantulas, they may not tolerate it and may exhibit aggression towards them if they come close to each other.
It is not recommended that they live with any other animals, such as snakes or lizards, as these could easily injure the tarantula.
Brachypelma boehmei, like all tarantulas, have a fairly long lifespan and can live for over a decade in captivity if well cared for.
Females typically outlive males with an average lifespan of up to 25 years, whereas males can live for up to 10 years.
They reach maturity at the age of about 5 years and can begin breeding after that.
The hatchlings will go through five instars, or molts before they are sexually mature.
During this time, their color will change drastically from a dark brown to a later, more vibrant red and brown coloration.
Proper care of the Mexican Fireleg Tarantula is key to having a healthy tarantula that can reach its potential lifespan.
Mexican Fireleg Tarantulas reproduce in a unique way. Females construct a special form of webbing known as egg sacs.
These egg sacs are made from a combination of silk webs and leftover material from the female’s molting process.
Each egg sac can contain up to hundreds of eggs, and the female will stay with the eggs until they hatch, to protect them from outside sources.
After two to three weeks the eggs begin to hatch and the young spiders emerge.
Once they have hatched, the young tarantulas will stay attached to the webbing for up to ten days.
At this point, the young spiders are ready to begin their lives and look for food and shelter.
The female arachnid will protect her young until they reach maturity and can take care of themselves.
Where To Find Mexican Fireleg Tarantulas
These spiders are usually found living in underground burrows or among rocks and debris on the ground in Mexico.
It is highly recommended to purchase your Mexican Fireleg Tarantula from a reputable dealer or pet store.
Breeding stocks are typically sold as juveniles, usually as a mixture of male and female specimens.
When making your purchase, be sure to check the health of the spider and ask questions about the spider’s diet and behavior to ensure that the spider’s needs can be met.
Mexican Fireleg Tarantula Care
Brachypelma boehmei is a loyal and personable pet with unique needs and requires a particular habitat, feeding sources, and other vital care considerations.
To ensure your pet’s health, provide a habitat with optimal temperature and humidity, feed your tarantula a variety of high-protein food sources, and handle it with care.
With proper care and love, B. boehmei can live a long and healthy life.
The ideal tank requirements for Brachypelma boehmei are an enclosure that is at least three to four times wider than the tarantula’s leg span.
A fully secured terrarium with a locking lid is recommended for their safety.
An enclosure with a secure bottom will also help prevent them from wandering away.
The optimal pH should range between 6.5 and 7.5 and hardness should range between 20–35 ppm.
The temperature should range between 75–85 degrees Fahrenheit and terrarium lighting should be kept to a minimum, as these tarantulas are nocturnal creatures.
What Do Mexican Fireleg Tarantulas Eat?
Feeding Brachypelma boehmei can be a satisfying and enjoyable experience.
These tarantulas are insectivores, so their diet primarily consists of insects like crickets, cockroaches, and mealworms.
For variety, you can also feed your tarantula the occasional pinky mouse or waxworm.
It is good practice to make sure all feeder insects are appropriately sized for your Mexican Fireleg, as any feeder insects that are too large may cause fear and distress in your pet.
The ideal frequency of feeding is once every 5-7 days.
While these tarantulas are naturally slow eaters, if you notice the spider isn’t eating often enough or isn’t getting enough food, it is best to revise the feeding schedule as necessary.
If you’re looking for a more detailed approach to feeding these arachnids, be sure to check out my ultimate DIY tarantula food guide. I give a more in-depth explanation of the best foods and my favorite recipe.
Best Tankmates For Mexican Fireleg Tarantulas
When choosing tankmates for a Mexican Fireleg Tarantula, you should always make sure that whatever other creatures you put in there cannot overpower or harm your tarantula.
These animals can provide companionship and an interesting atmosphere without posing a threat to B. boehmei.
Owning a Mexican Fireleg Tarantula can be a rewarding and fulfilling experience, as long as they are cared for properly.
They are small, captivating creatures with an impressive lifespan that can thrive in the right environment.
With the right care considerations and housing requirements, Brachypelma boehmei can live a long and vibrant life.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, Mexican fireleg tarantulas can be a great beginner tarantula species due to their overall docile nature and low–maintenance care requirements.
Mexican fireleg tarantulas can display defensive behavior and may exhibit aggression if they feel threatened or provoked, but they are generally not considered to be highly aggressive compared to some other tarantula species.
Mexican fireleg tarantulas typically range from 2-4 inches in length when fully mature.
Mexican fireleg tarantulas possess venom, but their venom is not considered to be highly potent or dangerous to humans. While their bite can cause discomfort and localized reactions, it is not typically life-threatening.
Mexican fireleg tarantulas have an average lifespan of around 20 to 25 years, although with proper care and conditions, they can potentially live longer.