<p><strong>Seemingly spray-painted, this new tarantula, <em>Typhochlaena costae</em>, is one of nine colorful—and rare—tree-dwelling <a href="http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/bugs/tarantula/">tarantulas </a>recently discovered in <a href="http://travel.nationalgeographic.com/travel/countries/brazil-guide/">Brazil</a>, a new study says. </strong></p><p> Tree-dwelling tarantulas typically have a lithe build, with thinner bodies and longer legs than other tarantulas. This makes them more agile and thus better suited for stalking prey in trees. The ends of their legs also have unusually large tips, helping them climb a variety of surfaces. </p><p> Tree-dwelling spiders lurk in the tropics of Asia, Africa, South and Central America, and the Caribbean. This species was discovered in the Brazilian cerrado, a savanna-like environment. Like the other new vibrant species, <em>T. costa</em> loses its bright coloration as it grows. </p><p> "Brazil is the country with the richest tarantula fauna in the world," said study leader Rogério Bertani, a tarantula specialist at the <a href="http://www.butantan.gov.br/home/">Instituto Butantan</a> in São Paulo, Brazil. </p><p> "Tarantulas are wonderful spiders, but they are poorly studied in many aspects," Bertani said. </p><p> (<a href="http://video.nationalgeographic.com/video/animals/bugs-animals/spiders-and-scorpions/weirdest-goliath-spider/">Watch a video of the world's largest spider</a>.) </p><p> <em>—Charles Choi</em></p>

In Living Color

Seemingly spray-painted, this new tarantula, Typhochlaena costae, is one of nine colorful—and rare—tree-dwelling tarantulas recently discovered in Brazil, a new study says.

Tree-dwelling tarantulas typically have a lithe build, with thinner bodies and longer legs than other tarantulas. This makes them more agile and thus better suited for stalking prey in trees. The ends of their legs also have unusually large tips, helping them climb a variety of surfaces.

Tree-dwelling spiders lurk in the tropics of Asia, Africa, South and Central America, and the Caribbean. This species was discovered in the Brazilian cerrado, a savanna-like environment. Like the other new vibrant species, T. costa loses its bright coloration as it grows.

"Brazil is the country with the richest tarantula fauna in the world," said study leader Rogério Bertani, a tarantula specialist at the Instituto Butantan in São Paulo, Brazil.

"Tarantulas are wonderful spiders, but they are poorly studied in many aspects," Bertani said.

(Watch a video of the world's largest spider.)

—Charles Choi

Photograph courtesy Rogério Bertani

Photos: Colorful Tarantulas Found

Read This Next

Soils found in Antarctica seem to contain no life

The complex situation for immunocompromised people and COVID-19 vaccines

Champions of wildlife and wild places win prestigious awards

Go Further

Subscriber Exclusive Content

Why are people so dang obsessed with Mars?

How viruses shape our world

The era of greyhound racing in the U.S. is coming to an end

See how people have imagined life on Mars through history

See how NASA’s new Mars rover will explore the red planet

Why are people so dang obsessed with Mars?

How viruses shape our world

The era of greyhound racing in the U.S. is coming to an end

See how people have imagined life on Mars through history

See how NASA’s new Mars rover will explore the red planet

Why are people so dang obsessed with Mars?

How viruses shape our world

The era of greyhound racing in the U.S. is coming to an end

See how people have imagined life on Mars through history

See how NASA’s new Mars rover will explore the red planet