Chilean Rose Hair Tarantula


Tarantulas get their name from a dance performed in Italy called the "Tarantella". This dance was performed after a person was bitten in hopes that it would sweat the venom out. However, a tarantula bite is only about as bad as a bee sting. Unless a person is allergic to the venom, very little harm is caused. There are also no recorded fatalities due to a tarantula bite. A Tarantula's diet consists of insects, frogs, other spiders, and even small mammals such as mice. They rely on their venom and large size to subdue and kill their prey. Once they've eaten enough they will form food balls with the leftovers made of silk. Tarantulas are usually skittish, running away from danger rather than acting defensively, but they may also raise their front legs and present their fangs in preparation to defend themselves. When threatened, a tarantula will flick urticating (stinging) hairs off its abdomen at the predator causing the predator to have an itchy feeling and while distracted, the tarantula will make an escape. Other hairs on the tarantula's body are their most important source of sensory perception. Some hairs contain temperature or smell receptors, and others can detect airborne vibrations. 

Click HERE for a Tarantula Activity Sheet!

Our Current Resident

Taboo, Female - Hatched January 1, 2014

Taboo came to ZooMontana in 2015 as a pet surrender. Taboo is a regular in programs both on and offsite. She is one of the most relaxed ambassador animals.


  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Arachnida
  • Order: Araneae
  • Family: Theraphosidae
  • Genus: Grammostola
  • Species: Grammostola rosea

Animal Facts

  • Carnivore: eats meat such as insects, frogs, spiders, and mice
  • Population: stable
  • Habitat: Desert and Dry Grassland
  • Mostly Nocturnal: active during the night

Our Animals