The Gooty Spider or biologically known as Poecilotheria metallica a species of tarantula. These species are commonly known as Jewel tree Gooty spider. It looks very elegant and colourful. The Gooty Spiders are known for its capability to populate and multiple in a faster rate compared to any other spiders.
Inspite of the ability to repopulate fast, yet these species are marked as critically endangered by IUCN. They are likely to face huge risk of extinction. The Gooty spiders were first discovered in the year 1899 in central southern parts of India specifically in Gooty town.
The Adult Gooty spider is dark blue with lighter colour variations on its carapace, abdomen and legs. And the younger ones have lavender fades on the body. Males have intense colouration compared to females.
An adult Gooty spider is about 15-20 cm in length and weighs about 28 to 85 gm. They have average life span of 12 years. Males have shorter life span than males. And mature male are long- legged and slender than females. They have spiky hairs all over their abdomen region.
The Gooty metallica is fund only in the reserve forests of southern India. It was said to be firs discovered in Gooty town. They are found in very small areas, as small as 100 square kilometre. In 2001 it was noted as highly distributed in reserve forests of Andhra Pradesh especially between Nandyal and Giddalur.
They are not very particular and picky about their food. They feed on small moths, flies, grasshoppers and small mice. People who own these spiders tend to feed cricket also.
Mating generally happens in the summer. The male Spiders creates a web and has sperms all over the web and females have tibial hooks on their feet for mating. This web which males create is a trap for females. The Gooty Spider has its eggs sac on its back and nurtures it for one to eight months depending on its environment. They have around 1000 eggs in their sac. The new born spiders are light lavender in colour. It takes about 2 to 2.5 years for a female and 1.5 years for male to fully mature. Female Gooty spiders have four times longer life span than males.
In case of pets the male and female spider should be left together in a cage. They should be well fed and the cage should be well arranged for them to attack.
Habitat degradation is one of the reason for endangerment of these species.
They also face a huge threat from international pet trading activities. People sell these spiders for a very big price for its appealing look.
Interesting facts about Gooty spider
- The Gooty Spider has its name as metallica because of its bright colour
- It is very expensive and may cost approximately $500 in The United States
- Big wasp and tarantula hawk is their biggest predators.
- The venom of these spiders is said to have medicinal values
- Females have greater life span than males.