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Fall means tarantula mating season in Colorado

Posted: 11:49 AM, Aug 08, 2019
Updated: 2019-08-08 14:02:51-04
Tarantula

FALL MEANS TARANTULA MATING SEASON IN COLORADO — It's almost fall and that means it is nearly tarantula mating season in Colorado. If you're a bit squeamish about spiders, not a fan of 8 legs, or if the whole spider the size of your hand thing bothers you - don't worry, they are harmless.

In late August through October, the male Oklahoma Brown, Colorado chocolate brown, and Chamberlin tarantulas that call southeastern Colorado home, can be seen crossing roads or moving in large groups as they search for mates.

Experts say thousands of spiders are searching for mates to reproduce before they die. The males leave there burrows in search of females in their own burrows.

Tarantulas are the largest arachnid in Colorado. The species seen here range from light gray-brown to dark reddish brown in color. The Oklahoma Browns can measure as large as 1 3/8 inches or longer with a leg span that can reach 5 1/2 inches in some cases.

You'll witness this migration for mating purposes in Southern Colorado, normally along the Arkansas Valley which includes Fremont, Otero, Pueblo, Custer, Huerfano, Las Animas, Bent and Prowers counties.

There are other large spiders native to Colorado. Out west you'll find "mini-tarantulas" in the form of the Aphonopelma vogelae and Aphonopelma marxi which are more black than brown in color, and smaller than other varieties.

Older adult tarantulas die off in the cold weather, although most of the species die within months. The lifespan of a tarantula can reach 10 years.