Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada

Family Theraphosidae - Tarantulas

tarantula - male Young Tranantula - Aphonopelma California Tarantula Aphonopelma genus - Aphonopelma chalcodes - female The Ozark Angler Tarantula - Aphonopelma hentzi? - Aphonopelma hentzi - male - female tarantula - male Texas Tan Tarantula - Aphonopelma anax Tarantula - Aphonopelma - male
Classification
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Chelicerata (Chelicerates)
Class Arachnida (Arachnids)
Order Araneae (Spiders)
Infraorder Mygalomorphae (Mygalomorphs)
Family Theraphosidae (Tarantulas)
Numbers
Approximately 55 species thought to occur in the US.
Identification
In North America, the only mygalomorphs that have claw tufts are the tarantulas (family Theraphosidae).
Range
There are over 50 species of tarantulas native to the southwestern and central portions of the United States, including several undescribed species (unknown to science). They can be found in all or parts of (going in a circle): California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Colorado, Utah, and Nevada. Their eastern border is the Mississippi River and further to the north, the Missouri River. There is an introduced population of Brachypelma vagans in central Florida, but this species is indigenous to southern Mexico and Belize. (atshq.com)
Remarks
Will not bite unless provoked - Their venom is no worse than most bee stings; however, some tarantulas can release a cloud of hairs that irritate the mucous membranes of mammals
Print References
Hamilton et al. 2016(1)
Prentice 1997(2)
Internet References
The Beginner's Guide to Theraphosid Taxonomy (a photographic guide to taxonomic terms and spider anatomy from the UK).
American Tarantula Society - Images and information.
Works Cited
1.Taxonomic revision of the tarantula genus Aphonopelma Pocock, 1901 (Araneae, Mygalomorphae, Theraphosidae) ...
Chris A. Hamilton, Brent E. Hendrixson, Jason E. Bond. 2016. ZooKeys 560: 1–340.
2.Theraphosidae of the Mojave Desert west and north of the Colorado River (Araneae, Mygalomorphae, Theraphosidae)
Thomas R. Prentice. 1997. The Journal of Arachnology 25:137–176.