A lot of people are scared of spiders, myself included, and none are more creepy than the many varieties of Tarantula. Big, hairy and eight legged, these furry arachnids are actually harmless to humans and pose no threat in comparison to some far smaller and less assuming poisonous spiders. There are actually over 90 variations of Tarantula and they are all very different.
Tarantulas’ sizes actually range from as small as a fingernail to as large as a dinner plate when the legs are fully extended. Depending on the species, the body length of tarantulas ranges from 2.5 to 10 centimetres with leg spans of 8–30 centimetres. Some of the largest species of tarantula may weigh over 85 grams; the largest of all, the goliath birdeater from Venezuela and Brazil, has been reported to reach a weight of 150 grams and a leg-span of up to 30 centimetres, males being longer and females greater in girth. The picture on this article is the great Goliath Birdeater, but not all tarantulas are that size and many are hunted by birds rather than the other way around.
The Pinkfoot Goliath was described 187 years after the Goliath Birdeater; therefore its characteristics are not as well attested, but it is generally thought to be the heaviest tarantula whilst two other species, the Brazilian Salmon Birdeater and Lasiodora Klugi, rival the size of the two Goliath spiders.
Some species of Tarantula are found in Europe, in countries such as Spain and Italy, but the majority live in South America and the United States. They are not native to the UK as the climate is too cold for them, though some brave people keep them as pets! Whether you like them or not, these spiders are relatively harmless to humans and do get rid of lots of annoying insects - so I suppose we should be thankful! If any of you have spiders or are interested in them, then why not leave a comment below this article or even write your own.