Science

Zoological Society of London reveals breeding success for rare spider species

Zoological Society of London reveals breeding success for rare spider species

One of the world’s most endangered spider species has experienced a breeding success at the Zoological Society of London (ZSL).

Approximately 100 Desertas wolf spiders hatched on May 21, in what is only the second time the species has been successfully bred in captivity anywhere in the world.

ZSL

Zoological Society of London reveals breeding success for rare spider species

Breeding success for one of the world’s most #endangered spiders We're celebrating after 100 Desertas wolf spiderlings have hatched @ZSLWhipsnadeZoo! This is only the second time the species has been bred in captivity anywhere in the world! https://bit.ly/2WM901e

The success follows two years of planning by zookeepers and conservationists at ZSL, who found a dark cellar in the zoo with the correct humidity and temperature for the spiders to breed.

Zookeeper Tyrone Capel said: “It has been fantastic to see these spiderlings hatch and, after two weeks clinging on to their mother’s back, climb off her to go their own way.

Zoological Society of London reveals breeding success for rare spider species

“Best of all it means that with a healthy population here at ZSL, we can continue to contribute to vital conservation research into one of the world’s most endangered arachnids, which we hope will benefit the species in the wild.”

The large, grey spiders, native to the Desertas Grande island in Madeira, only breed once or twice in their lifetimes.