Here's a really cool invert pet. They are known as amblypygi (am-blee-pie-gee), a type of arachnid. This one is the most common species in the pet trade, Damon diadema. They come from Tanzania. This species adult body length is 1.5 - 2 inches. Despite their appearance, they are completely harmless, with no venom. They're good to handle, though if startled they can move fast!


These guys are fascinating to watch! The "whips" are special antenniform legs, which they use to sense their environment, and to communicate with each other. They tend to move sideways like a crab. They move slowly unless they're startled. They are nocturnal and arboreal, living on cave walls in the wild. They use their spiny pedipalps to catch and hold their insect prey, just like a mantis. The males have larger pedipalps (mine is a female). They breed readily in captivity. Like scorpions, the female carries her young on her back until their first molt. Because this species is social, the young can be left with their mother forever. Adults can be kept in groups as well. Other amblypygi are more solitary. Some species are parthenogenetic.