Scientific Name: Harpactira pulchripes
Common Names: Golden Blue Leg Baboon | Golden Blue Leg | Blue Leg Baboon
WARNING: Illegal in South Africa.
Not for beginners. Although this baboon spider has a very laid back attitude. We still don’t regard baboon spiders as a good option for beginners.
A beautiful discovery.
Photo Credit – Chase Campbell (CEC Arachnoboards)
On a trip around Southern Africa to discover and document as many local baboon spiders as possible for his book, Author Patrick Gildenhuys had just spent a whole day searching an area for any local species that might be found around a spot in Grahamstown, South Africa. He was about to turn around and head for an afternoon around the braai with an ice cold beer, until by chance he checked under one last rock on his way back to the car and made the most beautiful discovery.
Support Patrick by buying his book: https://www.nhbs.com/a-pictorial-guide-to-the-baboon-spiders-of-southern-africa-book
Ash blue legs peeking out from their silken burrow was to be Patricks’s discovery of Harpactira pulchripes, the Golden Blue Leg Baboon Tarantula. Found in only a small area in and around Grahamstown, South Africa, no specimens have yet been reported or discovered in other areas to our knowledge as yet. News soon spread about this beautiful tarantula and before long, dodgy individuals made it their task to harvest as many as possible of these from the wild and were soon to be seen in collections in both Europe and the Americas, now the world over.
The stunning beauty of this baboon tarantula is all to do with why hobbyists the world over simply had to have them. Beautiful colors ranging from blacks, dark and light browns, to orange and gold with the typical black markings found on the carapace and abdomen of baboon spiders. All these tones are highlighted and accentuated by the silvery ash blue legs that have made this tarantula world famous.
Unfortunately, being part of the Harpactira genus, this species is illegal for South African hobbyists to keep, and all have to suffer watching hobbyists the world over enjoying a spider that lives on our doorstep…
For more information on baboon spiders, see the baboon spider atlas: http://www.baboonspideratlas.co.za/