It is not every day you will hear someone describe a tarantula as beautiful!
Greenbottle blue tarantulas are a beautiful mix of metallic dark blues, neon oranges and emerald greens. The intensity and level of how much green is shown will vary between individuals.
GBBs have become popular with collectors for their docile nature and eye-catching color scheme.
In this article, we share everything you need to know about this wonderful species.
|Common Name||Greenbottle Blue, GBB tarantula|
|Scientific Name||Chromatopelma cyaneopubescens|
|Range||Northern Venezuela in the Paraguaná Peninsula|
|Size||4-6 inch legspan|
|Color||Blue legs, green head and orange abdomen|
|Lifespan||3-4 years (males), 13-14 years (females)|
|Tank Size||10 to 25-gallon|
|Temperature||70°F to 80°F|
|Humidity||50% to 60%|
|Price||$30 to $80|
Greenbottle Blue Tarantula Species Profile
The Greenbottle blue tarantula (Chromatopelma cyaneopubescens) is a vibrant tarantula found in the Paraguaná Peninsula of northern Venezuela.
Evolutionarily, this species is unique as it is classified in its own genus, Chromatopelma.
They are a semi-arboreal species, meaning that while they are usually found on the ground they will occasionally build their web on small plants, under bushes or low-hanging branches.
Greenbottle blue tarantulas, or GBB for short, are a new world species of tarantula.
New world means that they are found within the western hemisphere.
This species is highly sought after by collectors due to their eye-catching color scheme.
Adults have captivating shades of emerald green, metallic blue, and bright neon orange.
As more and more people discover their beautiful colors and low care needs, they are becoming a common pet spider. Their ease of care makes them a very beginner friendly species for anyone interested.
Pros and Cons
If you do get one, be prepared to have the enclosure covered in webs.
These webs will run across the floor and up the sides of the enclosure.
Greenbottle blue tarantula webs are known for being extensive and so thick that you cannot see through them.
In the wild, these webs would help provide a hiding spot, are a cool retreat from the hot rays of the sun, and are also used as a net to catch their prey.
Greenbottle Blue Tarantula Care
A GBB tarantula is suited for any beginner, as long as you do not plan on handling them. Otherwise, their ease of care and wonderful colors are suited for any home. One of the most important care aspects is the enclosure set up. Once you set up a proper enclosure, they are a relatively simple species.
- Tank: 20-gallon glass (front-opening).
- Substrate: 2-3 inches of potting soil.
- Décor: Fake plants and driftwood.
- Temperature: 75°F.
- Humidity: 50-60%.
For a greenbottle blue tarantula the recommended enclosure size is about three times the length of their leg span. The average leg span of a GBB is around 4 to 6 inches, which means that their enclosure should be around 12 to 18 inches wide.
An enclosure that is 18 inches x 18 inches equals out to about a 20-gallon enclosure.
These spiders are known to be “semi-arboreal” so the enclosure should provide enough space for them to vertically build webs.
In the wild, the greenbottle blue tarantula is known to spin its webs at the base of plants, bushes and tree roots. It is a good idea to provide decorations like driftwood or fake plants to act as anchor points for them. Make sure to secure these fixtures so they don’t fall.
Any decorations that you place inside will quickly become an anchor point for webbing.
After adding decorations like fake plants, provide a ground level hide, but don’t over decorate.
Leave enough space for them to walk around and to have enough space to find a spot to molt.
Finally lay down a good 3 inches of substrate for any burrowing your spider may do. You have a range of options for substrate from coconut fiber, vermiculite mix, sphagnum moss, or some potting soil. Don’t use a substrate that holds moisture as their natural habitat is rather dry.
In the wild this species lives in a temperature range around 75°F, which is about average room temperature. This means that for most people, no special heating is required for their enclosure.
If your room temperature is generally below 70°F, you will need to use a heat mat.
Be sure that the heat mat covers only one third of the enclosure. This will create a hot and cool side across the width of the enclosure.
A heat lamp can be used, but is not recommended.
Heat lamps will generally warm up the majority of the enclosure and not provide a heat gradient. The lamp also emits light and the greenbottle blue tarantula naturally does not stay out in the sun. Some individuals have even been seen to use their webs as a shield from sunlight.
It is very important that you don’t put extra lighting in their enclosure and keep the enclosure away from any windows.
Their natural environment is not only warm, but dry.
Your greenbottle blue tarantula does not need high humidity and it is best to keep it around 50-60%.
This humidity can be managed by making sure the enclosure is well ventilated and does not have water retaining substrate.
Your GBB does not need to be misted.
Feeding green bottle blues is relatively easy because their natural diet consists mostly of insects, along with an occasional small reptile, mammal or bird.
As pets they can be fed a diet of crickets, with mealworms as treats:
- A full grown adult should be fed about 3-4 crickets every week.
- A juvenile will need to eat 6-8 small crickets every 2-3 days.
Any insect should be from a trusted source, and not wild caught. This will avoid introducing any parasites into their enclosure.
You should not have any issues getting your spider to eat. Greenbottle blue tarantulas are known to be strong, ravenous eaters. If they were to reject a meal, that likely means they are in pre-molt.
Molting is the process of a tarantula shedding its old layer of skin and emerging with a fresh new layer, similar to a snake shedding.
As any tarantula gets older it has to molt in order to grow.
Compared to an adult, a juvenile will grow more rapidly. They will have a larger number of molts in a shorter period of time.
A juvenile can molt every two months, while an adult will molt once or twice a year.
It is important to be able to spot when one is about to molt as their behavior and diet will change. Initially, they will find a quiet corner in their tank and lay upside down for a few hours. They will stay in this position until their cephalothorax pops off.
At this point they should begin to move their body and get their legs out.
If after a period of several hours after popping, they haven’t moved or made any noticeable progress, they are likely stuck.
Getting stuck in a molt is rare, but can happen.
At this point you would want to use a wet cotton tip to gently help coax the molt off. It will take a while and you need to keep the cotton tip wet.
The average lifespan of a greenbottle blue tarantula will vary depending on if they are male or female.
Females have been known to live up to 14 years. On the other hand, males are known to have a significantly shorter lifespan, living only 3 or 4 years.
As pets these spiders are hardy and rarely suffer from health problems.
The problems that are usually encountered are dehydration, parasites, and getting suck in the molt.
Dehydration can be taken care of by being attentive and making sure their water bowl never runs dry.
Parasites can be avoided by only buying insects from a trusted seller, and not feeding wild insects.
These spiders are sought after due to their unique coloration.
One of the most unique and immediately recognizable aspects of GBB tarantulas is their appearance.
Adult greenbottle blue tarantulas are captivating shades of emerald green, metallic blue, and bright neon orange.
Their head displays a nice mix between green and blue. The level of intensity and how much green is shown can vary between individuals. Their legs are a metallic dark blue color that is stunning to view.
Distinct from the rest of their body is their abdomen which is covered in neon orange hairs.
This bright orange stands out and contrasts beautifully.
It is not known why this species has developed such a unique coloration. What is known is that their colors are likely not used for any form of communication within the species as they don’t have great vision.
A juvenile has an entirely different appearance from an adult.
Juveniles initially lack the green and blue colors. They have tan legs and a head that is black with orange stripes. With each molt, the blue and green hues will gradually start to appear. While a juvenile can start small, an adult can grow to have a leg span of 4 to 6 inches diagonally.
Male vs Female Differences
The easiest way to spot the difference is to examine the molt. Within the molt at the top of the abdomen, there will be a crease between the four white spots left behind from the lungs. If the crease is smooth, that means you have a male. If the crease protrudes and is teardrop shaped, then you have a female.
There are some differences between males and females that beginners should know about.
If you have both a male and a female to compare, you will notice a slight difference in appearance.
Males tend to have a slimmer head and abdomen, while a female will be stockier and wider. The pedipalps (i.e. short appendages next to the mouth) of a male will end in a bulb, rather than the pointed ending of a female.
Care for a male and female is about the same, except that a male does not live nearly as long.
Behavior is also similar, with the exception of breeding. A female can be very aggressive towards a male during mating. If the male is rejected, or remains in the enclosure too long after they mated, the female will try to eat him.
Two greenbottle blue tarantulas should not be paired in the same enclosure, except for breeding. Even then you need to be careful and it is something beginners shouldn’t try.
When left on their own, the greenbottle blue tarantula can usually be seen wandering around their enclosure moving in and out of their tunnels of webs. This is good for keepers, as it means they do not hide their beautiful colors away.
They will spend a lot of time out in the open.
The greenbottle blue can be very skittish when someone is close, or when someone is trying to interact with them. Handling can be very stressful for them and it is not recommended.
A greenbottle is likely to retreat the moment they sense a disturbance.
Once they perceive a disturbance, they move surprisingly fast into their maze of webs for protection.
If they feel threatened, but don’t retreat, they may raise their fronts legs at a threat.
Generally these spiders just want to be left alone. As long as you don’t approach one in this stance, they will not attack. If you ignore this, they will become more defensive.
Their first defensive tactic is kicking abdomen hairs at you. These are called urticating hairs and are barbed hairs that can cause irritation and itching if they come in contact with the skin.
Are Greenbottle Blue Tarantulas Aggressive?
GBB tarantulas are not known to be aggressive.
They are considered to be an easy beginner species for that reason.
While not aggressive, they are known to be extremely skittish. Adults may bite if they feel threatened enough without being able to retreat to their webs safely.
The greenbottle blue tarantula is venomous, but it is not medically significant or dangerous to humans. Their venom is highly specific to cause damage to insects and mice.
For humans their venom won’t cause any serious reaction, beyond some discomfort and swelling.
If you do get bitten, treat the wound with soapy water and apply an ice pack on and off in 10 minute intervals to help control swelling.
Buying Guide and Price
A greenbottle blue tarantula is a very common pet for beginners, but you will have trouble finding one in big retail pet stores.
Smaller exotic stores may have some in stock, but your best bet would be to order from a breeder online.
Purchasing a juvenile is generally the best idea as they are usually cheaper.
However, there is some risk purchasing a juvenile. They can be more expensive to care for and if they aren’t established, then they have a higher chance of mortality.
Juvenile greenbottle blue tarantulas will usually cost between $30 to $40.
An adult would likely cost you around $60 and $80.
Price can vary from breeder to breeder and can increase with shipping or limited availability.
The next biggest cost would be the enclosure.
A 20-gallon enclosure can cost you around $200 once setup with substrate, décor, hides and bowls. Compared to other exotic pets like the bearded dragon, they are cheaper because they don’t need any special lighting or heating. Setting up a bearded dragon tank can cost over $500.
Greenbottle blue tarantulas are a vibrant new world species found in northern Venezuela.
The blues and greens of the GBB tarantula contrast beautifully with their bright orange abdomen.
These colors really pop and are easy to spot as they move across the fortress of webs that they will make in their enclosure.
Their ease of care and hardy nature makes them a great choice for any new tarantula owner looking for a beginner species.
While they may not be a pet that you will get to handle, they make up for this with their dazzling colors. This is not a species you can miss.