The Remarkable Truth About What Pet Tarantulas Eat

What do pet tarantulas eat, you ask? Well, I’m sure you’re spinning in your seat with anticipation, much like our eight-legged friends spin their intricate webs. Welcome to a delightful exploration into the dining habits of these often misunderstood and charmingly eccentric arachnidsOpens in a new tab..

Let’s set the scene: imagine you’re hosting a dinner party for your tarantula, and you’re unsure what to serve. Would it enjoy a chicken wing or perhaps some cut of beef? A slice of pizza? Or maybe it’s vegan? The questions are endless, and the answer might just surprise you.

In this article, we’ll dive into the fascinating and occasionally hair-raising world of tarantula cuisine, shedding light on the surprising variety and important nutritional needs of these unique creatures. Whether you’re a seasoned tarantula owner looking to spice up your pet’s menu or a curious bystander who’s just fallen down the Google rabbit hole, this article promises to keep you engaged, entertained, and educated.

We’ll be your trusted guide on this journey, highlighting the dos and don’ts of tarantula diet, dispelling myths, and maybe even making you chuckle a bit. So, whether you’re seriously considering tarantula ownership, or just keen on expanding your knowledge about the world’s largest spiders, strap yourself in. It’s time to discover what’s really on the menu in the tarantula world. Bon appétit!

Understanding a Tarantula’s Digestive System

Unlike us, tarantulasOpens in a new tab. don’t have jaws to chew their food. They use their fangs not only to catch their prey but also to start the digestion process. When they’ve secured their meal, they inject it with venom. This venom is pretty potent – it not only paralyzes their prey but also begins breaking down its insides.

Once the venom has done its job, the tarantula’s stomach comes into play. But don’t imagine a stomach like ours; a tarantula’s stomach is a bit more… well, active. It actually extends into the tarantula’s mouth, acting as a sort of ‘sucking stomach’. It works like a vacuum cleaner, sucking up the liquefied remains of their prey. It’s a bit gruesome, but also fascinating, isn’t it?

Why Is This Important?

This unique way of eating has a couple of implications for you as a tarantula owner. Firstly, it explains why tarantulas can only eat certain types of food. Your tarantula can’t chew, so anything that can’t be liquefied by their venom is off the menu.

Secondly, understanding their digestive process can help you spot when something is off. For instance, if your tarantula’s fangs are damaged or it’s not producing enough venom, it won’t be able to eat properly. These could be signs of illness, so if you notice your tarantula struggling to feed, it might be time for a vet visit.

So, there you have it – a quick tour of a tarantula’s digestive system. It’s a bit different from what we’re used to, but it’s part of what makes these creatures so fascinating. And understanding it will make you a better, more informed tarantula owner. Just remember – no matter how much you learn about them, never forget that tarantulas are wild animals, deserving of our respect and care.

Feeding Your Tarantula

So what do pet tarantulas eat then, and where do you find food sources for them? And once you’ve worked out all of this, another question might surface: how do you actually feed a tarantula once you have acquired a food source? We answer these questions for you in the following paragraphs.

Your pet tarantula will eat things such as:

  • silkworms
  • crickets
  • mealworms
  • cockroaches
  • king worms
  • horn worms
  • grasshoppers
  • cicadas
  • millipedes
  • caterpillars
  • smaller spiders
  • most other insects smaller than the tarantula.

Many of the insects can be sourced from a local pet store, and they are widely available online now, as well. In their natural habitat, tarantulas tend to survive on a diet of insects and other smaller spiders. Occasionally they might eat small lizards and mice. In captivity, it is obviously going to be up to you to provide their food, meaning that you will need to handle live insects to feed the spider.

Nevertheless, when feeding your tarantula, it is important to choose appropriately sized food. Although larger tarantulas can eat prey that is of a similar size to itself, it is better to opt for something smaller.

Some newer tarantula owners will just throw in a few insects like crickets and the spider will be fine with this. However, this could cause stress to your spider as some insects may fight back and bite the tarantula, causing injury. It is far better to feed the spider one insect at a time but remove live food from the tank after about ten to fifteen minutes if it has not been eaten.

Here’s a table summarizing some key food options for tarantulas, their nutritional value, availability, and other important details.

Food TypeNutritional ValueAvailabilityNotes
CricketsHigh in protein, low in calciumWidely available in pet stores and onlinePopular food choice, can be aggressive when hungry
MealwormsHigh in protein and calcium, but also high in fatWidely available in pet stores and onlineShould be given in moderation due to high fat content
SuperwormsHigh in protein and calcium, but also high in fatWidely available in pet stores and onlineSimilar to mealworms, should be given in moderation
RoachesHigh in protein, good calcium-to-phosphorus ratioAvailable in specific pet stores and onlineLess likely to harm tarantulas compared to crickets
SilkwormsHigh in protein, low in fatAvailable in specific pet stores and onlineCan be a healthy addition to the diet
King WormsHigh in protein, but high in fatAvailable in specific pet stores and onlineLarger and richer in fat than other worms, should be given in moderation
Horn WormsHigh in protein and calcium, low in fatAvailable in specific pet stores and onlineCan be a healthy addition to the diet
GrasshoppersHigh in protein, good calcium-to-phosphorus ratioAvailable in specific pet stores and onlineSimilar nutritional profile to roaches
CicadasHigh in protein, low in calciumSeasonal availability in specific pet stores and onlineCan be a seasonal treat for tarantulas
MillipedesModerate in protein, low in fatAvailable in specific pet stores and onlineOften eaten by tarantulas in the wild, not all species are safe for consumption
CaterpillarsModerate in protein, low in fatAvailable in specific pet stores and onlineNot all species are safe for consumption, should be sourced carefully
Smaller spidersVaries depending on speciesCan be found in the wild, but safer to buy from pet stores or onlineSome tarantulas eat other spiders, ensure any spiders are safe for your tarantula to eat
Pre-killed insectsSame as live counterpartsAvailable in pet stores and onlineConvenient, removes risks associated with live feeding
Commercially prepared tarantula foodBalanced nutritionAvailable in pet stores and onlineShould be used as a supplement to insects, not as the sole food source

It’s important to note that tarantulas are opportunistic feeders and in the wild, they can eat a variety of foods based on availability. However, as pet owners, we should provide them with a balanced and nutritionally complete diet to ensure their health and longevity. Always source food from reliable suppliers to avoid any risk of disease or contamination.

Safe Handling of Live Food

So, you’ve got your tarantula, and you’ve got a list of insects that your eight-legged friend is going to adore. But before you start dropping those critters into the enclosure, let’s talk about how to handle and store them safely.

First off, don’t worry! While it may seem daunting, handling live food is a lot simpler than it sounds.

Handling Live Food

Gloves are your friends here. While it’s not necessary to wear them, they can provide an extra layer of protection and peace of mind. You’ll want to avoid any rough handling of the insects, as injured insects may not be as enticing to your tarantula and can also lead to health issues.

When transferring the live food into the enclosure, use tweezers or tongs to gently pick up the insects. This can help ensure that you don’t accidentally harm the insect or your tarantula, and it keeps your fingers away from any potential bites or stings.

Storing Live Food

Now, let’s talk about storage. Proper storage is key to ensuring that your live food stays… well, alive.

Different insects have different requirements, but generally speaking, a small ventilated container with some sort of food (like fresh vegetables for crickets) should suffice. Keep the container in a cool, dark place, but avoid refrigeration as it can harm or even kill many types of insects.

Remember to regularly clean the container to avoid any build-up of waste and to maintain a healthy environment for the insects. Also, ensure that the insects have fresh food and water at all times, as a well-fed insect is a nutritious meal for your tarantula.

Just like with any other pet, handling and storing live food for your tarantula requires a bit of knowledge and care. But once you get the hang of it, it becomes just another part of the fascinating experience of owning a tarantula. Happy feeding!

Hygiene and Cleaning After Feeding

It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement and novelty of feeding your tarantula, but what happens after the meal is just as important. Maintaining proper hygiene and promptly cleaning up post-feeding are crucial steps in tarantula husbandry.

Importance of Cleanliness During and After Feeding

Just like any other pet, tarantulas need a clean environment to thrive. A messy, waste-laden enclosure can foster harmful bacteria, mold, and pests. These factors could potentially lead to a range of health issues in your eight-legged companion, such as infections, mites, or even the development of fatal conditions like nematode infestations.

It’s also worth noting that certain uneaten live food, like crickets, can turn hostile and nibble on your tarantula when left in the enclosure. Even partially consumed prey can attract pests or produce unpleasant odors if not removed promptly.

Cleaning Methods After Feeding

When it comes to the cleaning process after feeding, a spot-cleaning approach is generally recommended. This means removing any uneaten food or leftover prey remains as soon as possible. Tweezers can be very handy for this purpose, allowing you to reach into the enclosure without disturbing your pet too much.

For more thorough cleanings, you might want to consider periodically replacing the substrate and cleaning the entire enclosure. However, remember that tarantulas are sensitive creatures, and too much disruption can stress them. The cleaning schedule and methods largely depend on the species, the size of the enclosure, and the individual tarantula’s habits.

Lastly, always remember to wash your hands before and after handling anything inside the tarantula’s enclosure, as this prevents the introduction of potential contaminants. Your tarantula may not show affection like a cat or a dog, but it relies on you to keep its environment clean and safe. In doing so, you’re ensuring that your pet lives a healthy and fulfilling life.

Feeding Challenges and Solutions

Every tarantula owner, whether seasoned or novice, will inevitably encounter a few challenges in feeding their eight-legged friend. But not to worry – most of these hurdles are easily navigable once you’re armed with the right information.

Picky Eaters

Just like us humans, tarantulas can be fussy eaters. Some days, they may seem disinterested in their food or only eat certain types of insects. But before you panic, it’s important to note that tarantulas are opportunistic feeders in the wild and may not eat every day. It’s a normal part of their behavior. If your tarantula doesn’t seem interested in its meal, remove the uneaten prey and try again another day. A varied diet can also help spark their interest.

Pre-Molt Fasting

Tarantulas often refuse food when they are about to molt. This is a natural behavior and not cause for concern. Simply remove any uneaten food and wait. Once your tarantula has molted and its new exoskeleton has hardened, you can resume feeding.

Injury Risk

Tarantulas can be at risk of injury from live prey, especially if the prey is larger or more aggressive. Always supervise feedings to ensure your tarantula is safe. If you notice the prey fighting back, it’s best to remove it immediately.

Tarantula Not Eating

Sometimes, despite your best efforts, your tarantula may simply refuse to eat. A variety of factors could contribute to this behavior, including illness, stress, or unsuitable environmental conditions. If your tarantula refuses food for an extended period and you can’t identify the cause, consider consulting a vet.

Remember, patience and observation are key when it comes to feeding your tarantula. Keep an eye on your pet’s behavior, and don’t be afraid to seek advice when needed. These fascinating creatures can sometimes puzzle us with their habits, but with a little understanding and care, we can ensure they thrive in our care.

Alternatives to Live Feeding

Let’s tackle a topic that may be a sigh of relief for those who squirm at the thought of handling live critters – alternatives to live feeding. Indeed, for some tarantula owners, the process of procuring, storing, and handling live insects can be a bit off-putting. So, what if you want to own a tarantula but aren’t quite ready to embrace the ‘live lunch’ aspect of their care? Thankfully, there are viable alternatives that provide a compromise without compromising on your tarantula’s nutritional needs.

Pre-Killed Insects

First and foremost, pre-killed insects are a great alternative. They offer the same nutritional benefits as their live counterparts but without the potential hazards of handling live insects or the insect possibly injuring your tarantula. Just like live insects, pre-killed insects such as crickets, mealworms, and roaches can be purchased from most pet stores or online. They can be served by simply placing them in the enclosure. But remember, if your tarantula doesn’t consume the pre-killed insect within 24 hours, it’s best to remove it to avoid attracting mites or causing an unpleasant odor.

No products found.

Commercially Prepared Tarantula Food

If you’re looking for an even simpler option, commercially prepared tarantula foods are also available. These usually come in a pellet or gel form and are designed to provide all the necessary nutrients for your tarantula. While convenient, keep in mind that these should not completely replace a diet of insects, whether live or pre-killed. Instead, consider them a supplement to ensure your pet is receiving a well-rounded diet.

Let’s remember, variety is key to your tarantula’s health and happiness. Alternating between different types of food, live or otherwise, will ensure a well-balanced diet and offer a chance to observe your tarantula’s unique feeding behaviors. After all, part of the thrill of owning a tarantula is learning and adapting to its fascinating world, isn’t it?

Nutritional Requirements of Tarantulas

Just as you wouldn’t want to eat the same thing day in, day out, your eight-legged friend also appreciates some diversity in its diet. Variety isn’t just about keeping your tarantula from getting bored, though. It’s also key for meeting its nutritional needs.

Consider the humble cricket, a staple of many tarantulas’ diets. Crickets are a good source of protein, which is vital for your tarantula’s growth and overall health. But they’re not so high in calcium, which your tarantula needs for a strong exoskeleton.

That’s where mealworms and superworms come in handy. They’re high in both protein and calcium, making them an excellent addition to your tarantula’s menu. However, they’re also quite fatty, so they should be given in moderation.

And then there are roaches. Yes, the mere thought might give you the creeps, but to a tarantula, a roach is a nutritious treat. They’re rich in protein and have a good calcium-to-phosphorus ratio. Plus, they’re less likely to cause harm to your tarantula compared to crickets, which can become aggressive when hungry.

The Value of Variety

You see, each type of insect has its own nutritional profile, and no single one is the perfect food. But by offering a mix of different prey items, you can ensure your tarantula gets a well-rounded diet. This is crucial not only for its physical health, but also for its behavior. A well-fed tarantula is more likely to be active and display natural hunting behaviors.

A Word on Prey Size

Remember, the size of the prey also matters. As a rule of thumb, you should aim for prey that’s about the same size as your tarantula’s body (excluding the legs). Anything larger can stress out your tarantula and potentially injure it.

And there you have it – a quick overview of tarantula nutrition. By offering your tarantula a varied diet of appropriately sized prey, you’re doing your part to keep it healthy and happy. Just think of it as a little culinary adventure for your pet!

Molting and Feeding

Just like how we have certain habits when it comes to eating, our eight-legged friends do too. One of the most notable quirks is their behavior during molting, a process that all tarantulas go through several times in their lives. Molting is a vital part of a tarantula’s growth and development. It’s like their version of a makeover, shedding their old exoskeleton to reveal a brand new one underneath.

Pre-Molt Fasting

In the lead-up to a molt, tarantulas often turn into the equivalent of fussy eaters. You might notice your tarantula losing interest in food, turning away even from their favorite snacks. This behavior, also known as pre-molt fasting, is completely normal and not a cause for worry. It’s just their way of saying, “I’m getting ready for a big change, and I need some time to myself.”

Post-Molt Feeding

Now, here’s where the tricky part comes in. After your tarantula has completed its molt, it’s crucial that you refrain from feeding it immediately. Although it may be tempting to congratulate your tarantula on its successful molt with a hearty meal, resist that urge. Their new exoskeleton takes some time to harden, making them extremely vulnerable to injury.

A Gentle Return to the Dining Table

Once their exoskeleton has hardened — this could take anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks, depending on the tarantula — it’s safe to reintroduce food. Start with something easy to handle and digest, like a small cricket, before gradually returning to their regular diet.

Remember, patience is key during this period. Just like you wouldn’t rush a friend who’s taking their time to savor a meal, give your tarantula the space and time they need to navigate this incredible transformation. Their return to the dinner table will be all the more triumphant because of it.

Water Dishes in Tarantula Enclosures

There is some controversy in tarantula husbandry about whether or not it is a good idea to place water dishes in your tarantula’s tank. Some believe that water dishes are a hazard that could lead to drowning and should never be placed in an enclosure.

Then there are those who believe that water dishes are essential and that misting the tank is not sufficient to ensure tarantulas do not suffer from dehydration. This writer has always used water dishes and has never had a tarantula or sling drown. It is my opinion that water sources are necessary for tarantulas as they do not get enough water just from their food.

I use water dishes that are shallow, and I place about half an inch of water in the container. I change this every day. Not only do my tarantulas have a source of waterOpens in a new tab. should they need it, but the water also helps to keep the environment moist and humid.  

The Effect of Temperature and Humidity on Feeding

When it comes to tarantulas, it’s important to consider their natural habitat to provide them with the most suitable conditions for feeding and overall living. Just like humans enjoy a cozy ambiance during mealtimes, tarantulas too have certain preferences when it comes to temperature and humidity.


The comfortable temperature range for most tarantulas is between 70 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit (21-29 degrees Celsius). This range closely imitates their native tropical or desert environments. However, many species can tolerate slight variations from this range. But remember, the temperature can significantly influence your tarantula’s metabolism and appetite. If the temperature is too low, your tarantula may become sluggish and show decreased interest in food. Conversely, temperatures higher than the recommended range can stress your tarantula and cause rapid metabolism, potentially leading to increased food consumption.


The optimal humidity level varies between species, particularly between those that hail from desert climates and those from tropical environments. Generally, humidity levels between 50% and 70% are suitable for most species. The humidity level affects the tarantula’s hydration, which indirectly impacts its feeding behavior. If the enclosure’s humidity is too low, your tarantula may become dehydrated and lose appetite. Conversely, too much humidity can lead to issues like mold and mites in the enclosure, which can pose threats to your tarantula’s health and potentially disrupt its feeding.

Balancing Temperature and Humidity

Managing both temperature and humidity is a balancing act. An enclosure that is both too hot and too humid can lead to overheating and respiratory problems for your tarantula. Similarly, an enclosure that’s too cold and too dry can make your pet dehydrated and lethargic. Therefore, it’s essential to monitor both of these factors and adjust as needed to keep your tarantula healthy and ready to enjoy its meals.

Remember, the comfort of your eight-legged friend is paramount, and creating an environment that closely mimics its natural habitat is the best way to ensure a happy, healthy, and well-fed tarantula.

How Often Should You Feed Your Tarantula?

If you have any baby tarantulas in your tank, you will need to feed them regularly. This is because underfeeding can quickly lead to dehydration. To encourage growth then, you may want to feed them a small amount every day.

Adult tarantulas do not eat as often and can go for quite a long time without any food. Some can even abstain from food for up to a month if they have had previously eaten a large meal. They will also not normally eat when they are preparing to lay eggs or are about to molt.

If your tarantula is eating smaller insects though, it is probably best to offer food at least twice per week. As mentioned above, remove live food from the tank after around fifteen minutes if your spider has made no attempt to capture or eat it. If there is any half-eaten food in the tank, remove it after twenty-four hours.

Signs of Overfeeding or Underfeeding


Let’s start with overfeeding, which is surprisingly easy to do when you have a tarantula who seems eager to pounce on every cricket or mealworm that lands in their enclosure. While enthusiasm for food might seem like a positive trait, it’s essential to moderate your tarantula’s diet to avoid obesity and other health problems.

An overfed tarantula often has a noticeably distended abdomen, which may even appear shiny or stretched. This is more than just an aesthetic issue; a too-large abdomen can lead to difficulty moving and increased risk of injury. Remember, tarantulas can’t exactly hit the gym to shed their extra weight.

Another sign of overfeeding could be refusal of food or long periods of fasting. This can cause concern among tarantula owners, but remember that tarantulas, particularly adults, can go a considerable amount of time between meals.


On the other end of the spectrum, underfeeding your tarantula can lead to its own set of problems. An underfed tarantula might appear lethargic, showing less interest in its environment and potential prey. You might also notice a loss of body mass, particularly in the abdomen.

Underfeeding can also lead to decreased immune function, making your tarantula more susceptible to infections and other health issues. It’s worth noting, however, that a decrease in appetite can also be a sign of an upcoming molt or other natural behaviors, so don’t jump to conclusions too quickly.

Striking a Balance

Like with any pet, finding the right feeding balance for your tarantula may take some time and observation. Remember that each tarantula is unique, and factors such as age, species, and individual metabolism can affect dietary needs. The key is to observe and learn from your tarantula, adjusting its diet as needed to maintain optimal health.

Feeding Tarantulas During Different Life Stages

Proper feeding during the various stages of a tarantula’s life is essential for its healthy growth and well-being. The dietary requirements and feeding frequency do change as the tarantula progresses from a sling (young spider) to a mature adult.

Tarantula Slings

A tarantula sling is like a newborn baby. It has a high metabolism, which translates into a voracious appetite. During this stage, your pet tarantula requires frequent feeding – about once every two or three days – to promote proper growth. The diet typically consists of smaller, easy-to-consume food like fruit flies or pinhead crickets. Always remember, the prey size should be proportionate to the size of the sling; overly large prey can cause stress and potentially harm the young spider.

Juvenile Tarantulas

As your tarantula grows into its juvenile stage, you can start introducing a wider variety of food sources, including mealworms, small roaches, and larger crickets. During this stage, feeding frequency can be reduced to about two or three times a week. This is a significant period of growth, so it’s important to closely monitor the tarantula’s eating habits and overall health.

Adult Tarantulas

Finally, as your tarantula reaches adulthood, its feeding frequency will continue to decrease. Adult tarantulas can be fed once or twice a week, and their diet can include larger prey like full-sized crickets, roaches, and sometimes small lizards or mice, depending on the tarantula species and its size. Bear in mind that overfeeding an adult tarantula can lead to obesity and associated health risks, so moderation is key.

Health Issues Related to Diet

Just like other pets, tarantulas can face certain health issues that are directly related to their diet. Given the peculiarities of their feeding process, ensuring the right diet is crucial for a tarantula’s health and longevity. The problems due to improper diet can range from obesity to malnutrition, and in severe cases, even death.


Yes, tarantulas can get obese! Overfeeding your pet can lead to a condition commonly known as ‘fat abdomen’. This is usually noticeable when the abdomen becomes excessively large and bloated compared to the rest of the body. While this condition in itself isn’t immediately life-threatening, it makes the tarantula more prone to injury. The abdomen’s skin stretches thin, increasing the risk of rupture if the tarantula falls or is accidentally dropped. A ruptured abdomen is often fatal.


On the other end of the spectrum, underfeeding or feeding your tarantula a nutritionally deficient diet can lead to malnutrition. Symptoms may include slow growth, lethargy, refusal to eat, and in extreme cases, death. Each insect prey provides a different set of nutrients. Therefore, feeding your tarantula a variety of insects is the key to providing a balanced diet.


Despite their desert origins, tarantulas can easily become dehydrated, particularly if they are not provided with a water source or if their diet lacks adequate moisture content. Dehydrated tarantulas may have shriveled abdomens, and their overall activity levels may decrease.


Another health risk tied to diet is impaction, a blockage in the tarantula’s digestive system, often caused by indigestible food items. For example, the hard, chitinous exoskeletons of certain insects can cause this issue. Symptoms of impaction include a refusal to eat, lethargy, and inactivity.

Understanding these health issues related to diet can go a long way in ensuring the well-being of your tarantula. As always, observing your tarantula’s behavior, feeding habits, and physical changes will help you spot any potential health concerns early on.

What Do Tarantulas Eat – Conclusion

In conclusion, tarantulas are obligate carnivores and require a diet consisting of other creatures as they require nutrients that are only found in meat sources. They typically eat gut-loaded insects such as crickets, mealworms, silkworms, dubia roaches, or horn worms.

If a tarantula is hiding and refusing food, it is unlikely to be anything to worry about, as it is normal behavior before a molt. While they do not need heat like some other reptiles, their enclosure should be kept at room temperature and not exposed to drafts or direct sunlight.

Key Takeaways

  • Tarantulas use their fangs and venom to liquefy and suck up their food because they don’t have jaws.
  • Types of food that tarantulas can eat include crickets, mealworms, superworms, and roaches.
  • Variety in a tarantula’s diet is important for their nutritional needs and behavior.
  • Tarantulas may go through pre-molt fasting and should not be fed immediately after molting.
  • Overfeeding and impaction are health risks to watch out for in tarantulas.
  • Proper handling and storage of live food is needed to ensure the safety and health of both the tarantula and the prey.
  • A comfortable environment with access to water is essential for a healthy and well-fed tarantula.


Q: What is the primary diet of pet tarantulas?

A: Pet tarantulas primarily eat a diet of insects, including crickets, mealworms, and cockroaches. Some larger species may also eat small mice or lizards.

Q: How often should I feed my tarantula?

A: This largely depends on the size and age of your tarantula. Juvenile tarantulas need to eat more frequently, perhaps every few days, while adult tarantulas typically eat once a week.

Q: Is it necessary to provide live prey for tarantulas?

A: Yes, tarantulas are predators that require live prey. They respond to the movement of their prey, which triggers their hunting instincts.

Q: Can tarantulas eat fruit or vegetables?

A: No, tarantulas are obligate carnivores. They cannot digest plant matter and need a diet based entirely on meat.

Q: Is it safe to feed my tarantula insects from my garden?

A: It is not recommended. Insects from your garden may have been exposed to pesticides or parasites, which could harm your tarantula.

Q: Can I overfeed my tarantula?

A: Yes, overfeeding can be detrimental to your tarantula’s health. It’s better to underfeed than overfeed a tarantula. If your tarantula stops eating, it might be full, preparing to molt, or it could be a sign of illness.

Q: Do tarantulas need water?

A: Yes, tarantulas do need water. A small shallow dish of water should be provided, which the tarantula can drink from when it needs to.

Q: Can tarantulas eat human food?

A: No, tarantulas should not be fed human food. They need a diet of live insects to stay healthy.

Q: How do I know if my tarantula is hungry?

A: Tarantulas don’t typically show signs of hunger like other pets. The best way to ensure they’re getting enough food is to establish a regular feeding schedule based on their age and size.

Q: What if my tarantula refuses to eat the food I provide?

A: Tarantulas can refuse food for several reasons, including preparing for a molt, stress, or sickness. If your tarantula refuses food consistently, it’s recommended to consult a vet.

Q: Do different species of tarantulas have different diets?

A: While the primary diet of all tarantulas is insects, some larger species can eat small vertebrates like mice or lizards. However, these should be fed sparingly and not as a primary food source.

Q: Can I feed my tarantula pet store bought insects?

A: Yes, pet store bought insects are generally safe for tarantulas. They are bred in a controlled environment and are free of pesticides and parasites.

Q: Do tarantulas eat every day?

A: No, tarantulas do not need to eat every day. Depending on their age and size, they typically eat once a week or every few days.

Q: Can tarantulas go long periods without eating?

A: Yes, tarantulas can go for weeks, and sometimes even months without eating, particularly during periods of stress or when they’re preparing to molt. However, water should always be available.

Q: Should I remove uneaten food from my tarantula’s enclosure?

A: Yes, uneaten food should be removed promptly. Live insects can stress or harm your tarantula, and leftover food can attract mites or mold.


Please be advised that all images, designs, and creative content on this page are the exclusive property of JustExoticPets.comOpens in a new tab. and are protected under international copyright laws. The images may not be reproduced, copied, transmitted or manipulated without the written permission of

Unauthorized use, distribution, display, or creation of derivative works of any images contained on this site, is strictly prohibited and can lead to legal penalties. We actively monitor for, and enforce, our copyright interests.

If you wish to use any of our images, kindly contact us to seek permission. Respect of copyright is not merely a legal requirement but also an acknowledgement and support of the hard work and creativity that goes into producing them.

Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.

© 2023, All Rights Reserved.


I am a content creator by profession but exotic animals are one of my great passions in life. Over the course of my adulthood, I have had the pleasure of looking after stick insects, terrapins, an Egyptian tortoise, giant African land snails, a crested gecko, a Chilean rose tarantula, a couple of curly-haired tarantulas, and a selection of millipedes, centipedes and worms!

Related Posts