Anyone who has done a search for tarantula information or care sheets has likely stumbled upon links to the Arachnoboards forum. When I first started researching the hobby, I found that many of my Google searches inevitably brought me to this wonderful forum, and it wasn’t long before I decided to sign up.
If there is a place online with more useful information about tarantula keeping, I’ve yet to find it. The forum is populated by seasoned hobbyists and novices alike, and the amount of information shared and exchanged on any given day is impressive. It’s a wonderful community where posters can discuss the hobby and mingle with others who enjoy keeping tarantulas. There are discussion boards, picture threads and galleries, dealer reviews, classifieds, as well as many other useful boards and topics.
A few tips for getting the most out of the boards.
1. Sign up! This may seem obvious, but it is very easy to just lurk on the site without every signing up. Unfortunately, if you don’t sign up, you are not able to see some of the boards, including the classifieds or dealer sections. You definitely don’t want to miss out on the many deals to be found on these boards. Also, if you’re not signed up, you can’t post or look up member profiles (two thing that you might find useful later on).
2. Do your homework! Although there are a number of knowledgeable and helpful members on the boards who will happily respond to your questions, that doesn’t mean the free advice should be abused. Before posting what could be an obvious or oft-repeated question on the boards, take the time to do a quick Google search. Many care sheets and basic info can be found in less time than it would take to make a post. Or, you could always…
3. Use the forum’s SEARCH function! The amount of information on Arachnoboards it staggering. Chances are, if you have a question, it’s been answered somewhere before. Always use the search function first to see if you can quickly answer your own question. It’s easy, it’s quick, and it keeps the boards from being cluttered with questions that have been asked dozens of times before.
4. Beware of the “hot” topics! There are a few topics that can soon turn the boards into a battleground of dissenting arguments. Should you hold your tarantula, or does it endanger the animal? Should you supply water bowls, or is that a waste of time? Should you use expensive cages, or make your own cheaper ones? Do you have the experience to safely own an old world T? These are some of the topics that divide hobbyists and send tempers flying. You’ve been warned…
5. Identify those with experience and pay attention! It doesn’t take long to figure out which members have years of experience and valuable information to share. Pay attention to what these guys and gals say, as you will likely glean plenty of useful information from their posts and responses.
6. Use the scientific names! There are just too many species of tarantulas with way too many overlapping “common” names for hobbyists to keep straight. Just look up “white knee” and see how many species this name may apply to. Scientific names provide a convenient, accurate, and common language for hobbyist to use so that species aren’t confused.
Arachnoboards is a wonderful community for anyone interested in the tarantula keeping hobby, and should be a frequent stop for the serious enthusiast. Hope to see you on the boards!