For those who get hooked on the hobby, the topic of tarantulas can become all-absorbing. Suddenly, all of your free time is spent researching husbandry, learning scientific names, and observing and caring for these amazing creatures. However, unlike more “common” hobbies, like scrap booking, gaming, cooking, or any other pastime that doesn’t involve giant spiders, it can be very difficult finding like-minded folks to share your enthusiasm with.
We’ve all been guilty of it. We corner a spouse to share our excitement over finding a species online for a good price. Or, a coworker asks how our weekend was, and we respond by showing them photos of a recent molt. This can leave folks smiling uncomfortably and nodding politely as they try to figure out what the hell a “Poecilotheria” is and how to get away from you. After all, family, friends, and co-workers can only take so much spider talk before it becomes a bit overwhelming … and annoying. It doesn’t take long for you to be a person to avoid, a bit of an eccentric pariah, as folks try to keep from getting trapped into hearing more tarantula talk.
Heck, I know my wife, family, and co-worker were probably getting a bit tired of hearing about spiders every time I opened my mouth, which is why I started to blog about it. I just needed to get it out of my system (and spare some loved ones in the process).
So, where do you go when to find friendly like-minded people who share your love for tarantulas.
Facebook groups have become a very popular destination for those wanting to share their love of tarantula keeping. Most people have Facebook pages, and it’s very easy to find a group that will work for you.
Forums are another option, and there are many out there that offer great experiences and a wealth of information. One place I like to recommend is the Tarantula Forum. I’ve been a member for many years, and I’ve found the folks there to be incredibly affable and helpful. Want to post pics of a current molt? Or share your excitement over a recent acquisition? This is a wonderful place to do it and receive a warm response.
Even better, perhaps you have a question about husbandry or a particular species, but you’re afraid to ask. For those who have been on other social media sites or forums, you know how a seemingly innocent question can often lead to a lynch mob-type response. I can honestly say that I’ve never seen anything but positive, helpful, and encouraging replies to husbandry questions on the Tarantula Forum. It doesn’t matter how elementary or basic your question may be, the folks there will offer sound advice without a measure of judgment.
Personally speaking, I go there to chat with other keepers and to have some fun. It’s a blast keeping up with some of the other keepers I’ve met through the forum, YouTube, or my website. Between my blog and the YouTube channel, I spend much times answering questions (which I love). Sometimes, however, I just want to unwind and socialize, and this forum has been a great place for that.
So, if your friends and family are currently scattering when you approach, or if you have a question that you would love some advice on, be sure to check out the Tarantula Forum. It’s truly warm and welcoming community of keepers. And if you do, be sure to introduce yourself and drop me a line (you can find me under Tomoran with my familiar O. philippinus avatar!).
2 thoughts on “Tarantula Forum – A Friendly and Informative Place for Tarantula Enthusiasts”
Great article Tom! You and me were just talking about this the other day, and this post was badly needed. Super great info!
Heh…a * “YATF”. Thanks for the pointer. When I started, I joined a lot of places and social groups. Ended up having to prune back to avoid forum overload. I’ll check this one though.
My experience has been a bit different on the “real life” side. I don’t bring the subject up much, but a lot of folks now consider me “the SPIDERMAN” and pester a LOT for info…including “what is this evil thing in my bathtub?” questions, as well as the incessant “brown-recluse-bit-me” hoohah. [The answer for THAT, in my neck of the woods is ‘crap, crap, megacrap’ as we don’t have that lil dude in our neck of the woods.]
I even had one of my driving customers gift me a Latrodectus hesperus they caught which is now in an enclosure with egg sac. heh.
A problem I’ve found (and you know about as well) is the Forum gestapo syndrome: Admins who think they know all and are OFFENDED (tm!) when you contradict their POV. It is one of the reasons that I pulled back from a lot of stuff on Faffbook. I also commit the fluffy bunny sin of handling my T’s and that is verboten in many groups for silly reasons. (FB “T-handler” group FTW! heh.)
Good post as always, and great info. Cya over there! 🙂
* Yet Another Tarantula Forum. 😀