Mexican Redleg Tarantula (brachypelma emilia)

Are you thinking of getting a Mexican Redleg Tarantula as a pet?

These intelligent and captivating arachnids make excellent companions for those looking for a unique pet-keeping experience, provided they are properly taken care of.

In this guide, we’ll teach you everything you need to know about Brachypelma emilia care, from where to find them to the daily maintenance they need to thrive.

Read on to find out how to provide a safe and healthy home for this type of pet tarantula.

Common Name Mexican Redleg Tarantula
Family Name Theraphosidae
Scientific Name Brachypelma emilia
Use Pets
Temperament Non-aggressive
Lifespan Males: 6-8 years / Females: 20-25 years
Diet Carnivore
Adult Size 5-6 inches
Breeding Type Egg Layer
Care Level Moderate
Minimum Tank Size 15-20 gallons
pH 6.0-7.5
Hardness Moderate
Temperature 75-85°F

What Are Mexican Redleg Tarantulas?

Brachypelma emilia is a species of tarantula native to parts of Mexico, Guatemala, and Southern Honduras.

They are usually dark brown in color with bright orange and red markings on their legs, hence the common name.

These arachnids are part of the family Theraphosidae, which consists of large, hairy, and or brightly colored spiders.

Mexican Redleg Tarantulas require a lot of warmth and humidity to thrive, and are among the most gentle species of tarantulas, making them an ideal beginner pet.

What Do Mexican Redleg Tarantulas Look Like?

Brachypelma emilia is a terrestrial species known for its vibrant colors with distinctive black, red, and orange stripes across its legs.

These tarantulas have an average body size of about four to five inches and a leg span of approximately five to six inches.

Their bodies are generally black-brown in color, interspersed with vivid orange stripes on their legs and bright red highlights on their abdomen.

The hairs on their bodies are very fine and soft, making them a favorite among pet owners for being relatively touchable, although it is still recommended that you not handle them too frequently as it can be stressful for the spider.

On the underside of the abdomen, detailed patterns of white lines can be observed.

Additionally, the species has long curved fangs that they use to collect prey.

Benefits Of Using Mexican Redleg Tarantulas

Mexican Redleg Tarantulas make outstanding inhabitants in vivariums because of their docile and easygoing temperament.

Not only that, but they are also relatively low maintenance compared to other species of tarantulas.

In addition, these arachnids are visually stunning with their unique black-and-orange markings.

They will often take an active role in the enclosure’s environment by constructing intricate burrows and creating several layers of silk for protection.

Furthermore, they’re also known to form an attachment with their keeper, which in turn adds a great deal of happiness and companionship to any tank.

All in all, Brachypelma emilia can certainly add a touch of flair and vibrancy to any living ecosystem and make a great inclusion to any pet lover’s home.

Brachypelma emilia: Mexican Redleg Tarantula Care Guide!

Mexican Redleg Tarantula Facts

Brachypelma emilia is an intelligent and docile species that require careful handling and intensive care.

They naturally feed on insects, have a lifespan of several years, and come in beautiful shades of brown with orange and yellow markings.

These tarantulas are not easy to breed in captivity but can produce clutches with hundreds of eggs when successful.


Mexican Redleg Tarantulas are native to Central Mexico where they flourish in rainforests and coastal deserts.

They inhabit scrub desert and rainforest-like environments in the states of Mexico, Hidalgo, Tlaxcala, Veracruz, and Oaxaca.

Their natural environments are often humid and blessed with plentiful foliage and other forms of vegetation, including thorny bushes and trees.

These tarantulas are burrowing creatures, so their natural habitats consist of ground-level soil, leaf litter, and various forms of decaying materials.

Although they can go for periods of time without having to drink, Brachypelma emilia depend on the right humidity levels, so they will dive deep into the ground and seek refuge in earthy areas to stay hydrated.


In the wild, they feed mainly on insects such as crickets, grasshoppers, and cockroaches.

They may also feed on lizards, snakes, and frogs on occasion.

Mexican Redleg Tarantulas are opportunistic feeders and can even eat decaying prey.


Brachypelma emilia are friendly and docile arachnids that make wonderful pets.

They are not aggressive towards humans and only use their venom when they feel threatened.

They are gentle and can be easily handled if they are properly trained. With their shy demeanors, they can be easily managed and kept in a controlled environment. 

Mexican Redleg Tarantulas are also quite passive around other animals.

When larger animals are predatory or threaten them, they generally remain in the safety of their burrows.

They can, however, become agitated and aggressive when provoked so it is wise to handle them carefully.


Brachypelma emilia has a relatively long lifespan depending on the sex. Males live for approximately 6 to 8 years in captivity and females will live for 20 to 25 years.

These spiders will reach maturity at 2 or 3 years of age depending on the conditions, at which point they begin to reproduce.

During courtship, the male will present the female with a web packet filled with sperm.

The female will consume this packet and fertilize her eggs internally.

It usually takes 8 to 12 weeks for the eggs to develop into tiny spiderlings.

After birth, the female should be removed from the enclosure to avoid cannibalism towards the young.

The spiderlings will slowly grow and molt until they reach maturity.


Mexican Redleg Tarantulas can mate and reproduce both in the wild and in captivity.

In the wild, males will ascend tree trunks and rock faces to search for potential mates.

Once a male has located a female, he will perform courtship behavior to attract her.

Courtship typically includes waving his front legs and vibrating the hairs on his abdomen to attract females for mating.

Mating typically takes place during the rainy season for Brachypelma emilia, with the egg sac being laid shortly after by the female.

Where To Find Mexican Redleg Tarantulas

Finding Mexican Redleg Tarantulas to care for can be difficult, as they are mostly found in their native habitats in parts of Central America.

Wild tarantulas can be found living in warm, humid climates in the tropical rainforests and arid mountainous regions of the southern and western parts of the country. 

For those who prefer a more controlled environment, Brachypelma emilia can also be purchased from reputable online retailers or found in tarantula forums.

Make sure to purchase only from breeders with a track record of providing healthy and ethically sourced specimens.

When buying online, be sure to check reviews first and ask plenty of questions about habitat and dietary needs.

Mexican Redleg Tarantula Care

Caring for a Mexican Redleg Tarantula requires providing an appropriate and safe environment, with temperature and humidity levels within their optimal range, appropriate terrarium substrate, hiding spots, and decoration.

They should be fed a variety of food sources and should have water available at all times.

Regular health and hygiene checks should be performed, and handling should be done with care.

Tank Requirements

When setting up a tank for Brachypelma emilia, a glass or plastic terrarium of at least 15 gallons should be used.

A sand and coco fiber soil mix should be used and the substrate should be kept damp with a mister or a regular misting schedule.

Ideal tank temperature should be kept between 75 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit and should never drop below 68F.

The relative humidity should be kept between 70 and 80 percent.

A shallow water dish can be added for moist areas, but it should be emptied regularly to avoid stagnant water.

Terrarium lighting is necessary for Mexican Redleg Tarantulas, as they are nocturnal creatures and need consistent day/night cycles.

The pH of the tank’s water and soil should be between 6.5 and 7.5.

What Do Mexican Redleg Tarantulas Eat?

Feeding Brachypelma emilia is an essential part of their care and should be done carefully.

These tarantulas should be fed insects and other small arthropods, such as crickets, mealworms, and roaches.

It is a good habit to make sure that the insects being fed are smaller than the body of the tarantula.

Insects should be fed one or two times a week and can be given as many as they can eat in 5-15 minutes.

When feeding Mexican Redleg Tarantulas, it’s good to remember to dust their food with nutritional supplements, like calcium and other minerals.

This helps ensure they are getting the proper nutrition they need to stay healthy.

Other items you can feed your tarantula include:

• Frozen/thawed pinkie mice
• Slugs
• Earthworms
• Waxworms
• Silkworms
• Stick insects
• Meal grubs
• Aphids
• Houseflies

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.

What Do Tarantulas Eat? | Best Pet Tarantula Food & Feeding!

Best Tankmates For Mexican Redleg Tarantulas

Brachypelma emilia prefer to live alone, so don’t plan on housing them with other arachnids or reptiles.

However, there are some animals that make great tankmates and can provide supplementary care without putting the spider at risk.

This includes invertebrates such as pet snails, isopods, and springtails, which are all beneficial cleaners.

These animals will help to keep the tank clean by consuming uneaten food and decaying matter, preventing bacterial and fungal growth.

Additionally, sticks insects, cockroaches, and millipedes still make excellent tankmates for Mexican Redleg Tarantulas, as they too occupy the same heat, humidity, and food requirements as the tarantula.

These tankmates must still be monitored carefully to ensure that they are not harmfully interfering with the tarantula’s environment.


We hope this guide has helped you become well-informed about caring for a Mexican Redleg Tarantula.

Remember to prioritize their safety and comfort when it comes to handling and offering food and water, and to create a safe and stimulating environment that respects their natural wild habits.

With the right care and attention, Brachypelma emilia will stay healthy and active for many years to come.

Frequently Asked Questions

Mexican red knee tarantulas can reach a leg span of around 5 to 6 inches (12 to 15 centimeters).

The price of a Mexican red knee tarantula can vary depending on factors such as its age, size, and the seller, but generally, they can range from $50 to $150 or more.


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