Mexican Redknee Tarantula

(Euathlus smithi)


Mexican Redknee Tarantula IUCN LEAST CONCERN (LC)


Facts about this animal

The Redknee tarantula is a dark spider with a black abdomen covered with brown-orange guard hairs. The carapace is black giving way to buff-coloured perimeter. The characteristic legs have orange to dark red-orange "knees". It is a large tarantula with males reaching 55 mm in body lrg and with an approximately 150 mm diagonal legspan. Females have a larger body, about 75 mm long. Their diagonal legspan is about 140 mm. Redknee tarantulas are essentially nocturnal. They live on the ground, usually in a burrow. Like other spiders, they use silk for a variety of purposes, e.g sealing leaves together, lining the burrow and making egg cocoons but in general they do not spin webs. The female lays 100-400 eggs. The spiderlings hatch between 1 and a half to 2 and a half months.

Did you know?
that, although they have eight eyes, they do not have great vision, so use their sensitive leg hairs for guidance? Palps on the end of the legs allow the spider to smell, taste and feel.


Name (Scientific) Euathlus smithi
Name (English) Mexican Redknee Tarantula
Name (French) Tarantule à genoux rouges du Mexique
Name (German) Mexikanische Rotknie-Vogelspinne
Name (Spanish) Tarantula mexicana pierna roja
CITES Status Appendix II
CMS Status Not listed



Photo Copyright by
Zoo Wuppertal (Germany)



Range Along the Pacific Coast of Mexico
Habitat In arid rocky areas, scrubland and deserts of Mexico, living primarily on the ground, in burrows and under rocks.
Wild population Unknown. This tarantula is one of the most popular pet tarantula. Its wild populations were threatened by over-collection for the pet trade and this is why they were listed on CITES Appendix II in 1985. Most Redknee tarantulas kept in zoos or by private owners are now bred in captivity. Wild populations are now more threatened by habitat destruction.
Zoo population 170 reported to ISIS (2009), but this species is also frequently keep by privat owners

In the Zoo

Mexican Redknee Tarantula


How this animal should be transported

For air transport, Container Note 62 of the IATA Live Animals Regulations should be followed.


Find this animal on ZooLex


Photo Copyright by
Zoo Wuppertal (Germany)

Why do zoos keep this animal

Many people are afraid of spiders . The redknee tarantula is a very docile species which can easily be handled and demonstrated to the visitors, which may help to cure them from their arachnophobia.