Red-rump tarantula, Brachypelma vagans

Photo by Aimée Thomas, Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, Belize, May 2011.

Photo by Shannon Fortenberry, Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, Belize, May 2010.

Photo by Aimée Thomas, Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, Belize, May 2010.

Photo by Bob Thomas, Tikal, Guatemala, May 2012.

Photo by Bob Thomas, near San Miguel Village, Toledo District, Belize, May 2004.

Photo by Bob Thomas, San Miguel Village, Toledo District, Belize, May 2010.

Photo by Shannon Fortenberry, San Miguel Village, Toledo District, Belize, May 2010.

Photo by Shannon Fortenberry, Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, May 2010.

Red-rump tarantulas, Brachypelma vagans, are the most commonly encountered large mygalomorph in Belize.  Pictured above are the adult, the adult with an egg sac (they often sit outside their holes to presumably allow the egg cases to dry a bit), lots of babies sitting on the web at the entrance to the burrow immediately after hatching, and, lots of fun to see, the march of juveniles as they leave the company of mom.  They tend to march off in straight lines and disperse, being not much more than 1 cm in length at the time.  They do not disperse too far, which is why when you find one, you usually find many!

There is also a photo of a red-rump burrow.  The presence of a web over the entrance verifies that a spider is at home.  Red-rumps also use spaces under stones, cracks in walls, etc.

These are peaceful critters, even if they give you the willies when you see them.

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