Mesmerized, fixated with horror, I’m watching a Mexican fireleg tarantula on the move. Huge, hairy, with legs the color of carrots, this one isn’t crawling around my house (phew!) but across my computer screen, in video form.
It amazes me that anyone would want to keep a fireleg tarantula for fun. But people do.
A fireleg was one of the more than $40,000 worth of spiders, insects, and other crawlies stolen from the Philadelphia Insectarium and Butterfly Pavilion in late August in a suspected attempt to sell them into the pet trade. Earlier that month, a man in Singapore was fined $12,800 for illegally keeping 92 tarantulas in his home and trying to smuggle six more—stuffed in plastic containers in the