Avian & Exotic Pet Clinic of Roanoke

Paul Stewart, DVM

(540) 989-4464


Did you know...

  • The word "invertebrate" means without backbone.
  • Hermit crabs are wild animals that have been caught and learn to live in captivity easily since they are very versatile eaters with healthy appetites
  • There are two different species of hermit crabs that you will commonly find being sold as pets in the United States, the land hermit crab and the Eccie

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  • Life expectancy: Variable based on species (3 years to greater than 20 years)
  • Food: Tarantulas and scorpions (insects), Hermit crabs (omnivorous)
  • Tarantulas should be housed individually in an escape proof terrarium (>3 gallons) with pea gravel, Astroturf or Yesterday’s News.
  • Tropical species require microclimates of higher humidity.
  • Cost: Tarantulas and Scorpions $25 to $200, Hermit Crabs $2 to $15
  • Do not depend on light as a heat source since most are nocturnal. Provide adequate temperature and humidity for the species in hand.
  • Do not leave feces, prey remains or sloughed skin in the cage for long. This can lead to bacterial and fungal overgrowth in the cage.
  • Health tips: Keep temperature between 73 to 86 degrees daytime, 80 degrees at night.
  • Provide micro-climates of humidity by providing a small Tupperware container with an entrance holes and lined with sphagnum moss kept slightly damp to provide a microclimate of humidity. This will aid spiders in shedding.
  • Gut-loading the insect prey with a product like “Fluker’s” Cricket Diet is a good idea for 3 days prior to feeding them to your pet.
  • Annual physical exams are recommended.