Scientific Name: Tapinauchenius cupreus
Common Names: Violet Tree Spider | Ecuador Tree Spider | Black & Gold Tree Spider
Tapinauchenius is probably one of the fastest species of Tarantula on the planet. From sling to adult, they are capable of teleportation from one side of an enclosure to another in the blink of an eye. These are very sleek looking tarantulas, with a metallic and almost silky appearance. Juveniles and freshly molted specimens can be dark purple or violet with a slight gold sheen over their bodies. As specimens progress through a molt cycle and also get to their older years, their dark purple becomes shrouded by a metallic golden overlay, making it evident why one of it’s common names is the “Black & Gold Tree Spider”. Their abdomens are also quite shiny and sleek in appearance with what look like little dimples appearing towards the spinnerets.
Tapinauchenius cupreus is a New World arboreal species which is more like an Old World species in appearance and definition. They lack urticating bristles on the abdomen and also lack the ability to stridulate (chafe) their fangs. Their venom is medically significant and bites are painful, but are said to have a weaker venom than expected from an “Old-Word-Like” species.
If you are new to old world arboreal species or looking to keep old world arboreal tarantulas, the Violet Tree Spider is a good introduction species to learn how to manage the speed, behaviour and temperament of species like Poecilotheria, Cyriopagopus, Stromatopelma, Heteroscodra or other feisty old world species.