In 1888, one “Dr. Ludwig” collected a blue spider in Paraguaná, Venezuela. The specimen was preserved and in 1907 described by Embrik Strand. After a genus revision it became known as Chromatopelma cyaneopubescens.
Paraguaná is a peninsula in northern Venezuela. But for a tiny isthmus it is an island in the Caribbean, with some texts classifying it as the westernmost of the Leeward Antilles. Paraguaná’s dry climate is associated with coastal dunes and desert flora (xeric scrub [shrub]) and fauna. Desert may not be one’s first thought given a Venezuelan endemic, but Paraguaná’s biogeography stands in stark contrast to continental Venezuela, which hosts rainforest classics such as Psalmopoeus irminia and Theraphosa. Indeed, attention to Paraguaná’s biogeography and climate has proven useful in surmounting C. cyaneopubescens breeding difficulty.
Raising C. cyaneopubescens is easy. The species is hardy at all instar stages, particularly so beyond the first few. Desert conditions need not (best not) be mimicked—in the wild this spider spends most of its time in a burrow. Captive specimens seem to prefer hides to digging burrows. Adult coloration appears at 3” or so. Temperament is mid-range so best to avoid mishaps by keeping hands away.
This video shows C. cyaneopubescens in the wild (scroll to 16:30).
The second photo above shows the color pattern of spiderling/juveniles.
|Dimensions||1 × 0.5 × 0.5 in|