Many animals have become extinct, while others are on the endangered’s list. In Thailand, a Thai YouTuber discovers a new tarantula species that live on bamboo.
Discovery of a New Tarantula Species in Thailand
Thai YouTuber JoCho Sippawat discovered a new tarantula species while having a wilderness trip close to his home. He found the spider inside a mature bamboo stalk. The nest entrance measures 2 to 3 centimeters lined with a silk tubular burrow. The new spider species nesting inside the bamboo constructed silken shelter tubes that shrouded the stem cavity.
He emailed the spider’s picture to Narin Chomphuphuang, arachnologist and researcher at the Khon Kaen University. Along with another arachnologist, Chaowalit Songsangchote, both men went on a search to verify if the tarantula species was previously discovered.
Researchers identified that the arachnid belongs to a new species and genus. They name the new tarantula species Taksinus bambus after 18th-century Thai King Taksin the Great.
“This species is unique because it is associated with bamboo, and we have never observed this tarantula species in any other plant. Bamboo is important to this tarantula, not only in terms of lifestyle but also because it can only be found in high hill forests in the northern part of Thailand, at an elevation of about 1,000 meters. It is not an exaggeration to say that they are now Thailand’s rarest tarantulas,” said Chomhuphuang said in a press release.
Southeast Asian tarantulas are either terrestrial or arboreal. Terrestrial arachnids build their nests under the ground. Arboreals, on the other hand, live on trees. Arboreal spiders are usually found in Borneo, Indonesia, Sumatra, Malaysia, and Singapore.
Significance of Bamboos to Taksinus Bambus
For instance, bamboo is essential to Taksinus Bambus because this new tarantula species in Thailand associates itself very much with the grass. Bamboos comprise the grass family, containing moisture that helps the arachnid maintains its temperature. In addition, it helps in the spider’s molting and shedding of their exoskeletons. Bamboos also have a slippery surface that hinders predators.
Taksinus bambus don’t hollow out the bamboo stems themselves. They rather rely on other animals’ assistance, such as worms and beetles. There are instances when the bamboo cracks on its own due to changes in humidity.
Thai forests currently cover only 31.64% of the nation’s total land area. Chomphuphuang and others are on a mission to study and conserve the country’s wildlife and biodiversity from extinction.
Image Source: 251206/Pixabay