Malaysian Trapdoor Spider
(Liphistius sp. - possibly desultor)
by Jon Fouskaris
*Information provided by
Frank Somma

Malaysian Trapdoor Spider
Specimen provided by Frank Somma.

Photo taken by Michael Fouskaris.

     The Malaysian Trapdoor Spider is an extremely rare and unique spider.  Among the most primitive spiders on earth, Malaysian Trapdoor Spiders still retain segmented abdomens! These colorful little beasts may be slow with evolving, but they are fast with everything else! With regards to speed, Frank Somma says the Malaysian Trapdoor Spider is "like lightning". This species, like other trapdoor spiders, creates a cover for its' burrow entrance, known as the "trapdoor". To help catch prey, the spider will spin triplines that radiate from the trapdoor. Then, when an insect or other food item falls to the trapdoor, the Malaysian Trapdoor Spider shoots out of the ground "like lightning", and returns into its' underground lair with a freshly-killed meal. In their natural habitat, they are found in hills, or on a slope, which may help direct prey to the trapdoor. The Malaysian Trapdoor Spider is not actually a true spider, but a liphistid. Rare in the wild and almost non-existent in captivity, the Malaysian Trapdoor is a real collectors' item. Hopefully, a few of this species might become real breeders' items in the future. The Malaysian Trapdoor Spider is a truly outstanding species! 
Range Rainforest habitat of Malaysia.
Type Burrowing.
Diet Spiderlings eat flightless fruit flies, and pinhead crickets. Adults eat crickets, and other large insects.
Full Grown Size 4 to 4.5 inches.
Growth Unknown.
Temperature 75 to 80 F.
Humidity Around 80%.
Temperament Aggressive and nervous.
Housing Spiderlings can live in a small clear plastic container with air holes. Adults can live in a 5 to 10-gallon tank. Floor space is as important as height.
Substrate 6 to 10 inches of peat moss, or potting soil. Make sure the substrate is on a slope.
Decor No decorations are really needed.
Other Names Malaysian Giant Trapdoor Spider.

*Please note that ALL spiders have a certain amount of venom. Although most people are not affected by this species, some people may be allergic to the venom, or just more sensitive, making it a dangerous situation. This is one of the reasons that people should not handle this spider.  Affects of this spiders' natural defenses may vary between people. All spiders should be considered dangerous, so be careful, because you don't want to find out if you are allergic or more sensitive the HARD WAY!

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