Do spiders drink water? These videos reveal a tarantula’s sneakiest habit
Today we’re going to settle as fascinating question once and for all – do spiders drink water? From the time we’re young, we’re conditioned to believe that a spiders’ relationship with water is one of avoidance and destruction. From the nursery song “Itsy Bitsy Spider” to perhaps seeing our parents flush bugs down the toilet as kids, one wouldn’t think that a spider might actually NEED water to survive!
If you’re a new tarantula owner or are considering getting a tarantula, you may even wonder why every piece of information you read about tarantula care involves a water dish. Meanwhile, you’ve never even heard of a tarantula or spider drinking water and needing it to survive.
So do spiders drink water?
Hell yeah, they do! In fact, water is SO important to tarantulas that they need it even MORE than food! Crazy, right?! The surprised looks on people’s faces after they learn that information is exactly why we need to talk about spiders and educate people about these creatures more often!
While tarantulas can go a pretty long time without food (some regularly fast for weeks-months, even over a year like my elderly grammostola rosea), a spider that is dehydrated can be fatal. With tarantulas, you can leave them alone for several days without food if you have to go on vacation but they still MUST have a source of water (I recommend a water dish like this)!
How do spiders drink water?
Great question! Tarantulas drink water through their mouths, which are located right behind their fangs. Basically, a tarantula will submerge its chelicera in the water and suck water in through its mouth. It’s pretty adorable, it you’re lucky enough to catch your spider having a drink! Many tarantula owners don’t even know that their spiders drink water because tarantulas will RARELY do this in daylight or in front of anyone. Tarantulas are nocturnal and very secretive, so don’t be alarmed if you never see your tarantula drinking water – they are probably just doing it while you sleep. Here’s some pics of my own spiders have a little sippy sip!
Even baby spiders drink water!
Here’s an awesome video from tarantula YouTuber Exotics Lair, who is actually famous for his hilarious videos where he gives his tarantulas water:
Here’s another video, showing a spider drinking water on its back. Sometimes, in cases of dehydration or bad health, tarantula owners will help their tarantulas drink by either placing a water droplet on their mouth or putting a moist towel or q-tip near their mouth opening. Watch this tarantula drink water in this time-lapse video:
How do you know if your tarantula is dehydrated?
A tarantula that needs to drink water will have a shriveled abdomen, which is the most obvious and biggest sign that your spider needs to have a drink of water. While tarantulas generally have a smaller abdomen right after they have molted, if your spider is looking very skinny and its abdomen has shrunk in a way that is not related to a molt, your tarantula could be in need of water. Here are a few great videos about how to get your spider to drink water:
I hope this helped you! By the way, check out my new tarantula magazine for more cool spider stuff:
I’m putting out issues every 2 months! If you’d like to be a part of that, you can visit the magazine’s Patreon page to subscribe or make a submission! You can also contact me at [email protected] for more info!
If you want to learn more about tarantulas, feel free to check out my big tarantula guide (I talk about lots of tarantula facts and enclosure/care tips). You can also get free tarantula tips by signing up for my newsletter or subscribing to my YouTube channel! I release new tips every Tuesday for Tarantula Tuesday! And I also sell some pretty cool tarantula t-shirts, if I do say so myself 😉