Invertebrate Interests is authored & photographed by Lillie Nyte of Inverts Unlimited
Subspecies: Damon diadema diadema, Damon diadema robustus
Common name(s): Tanzanian giant tailless whip scorpion, Giant tailless whip scorpion, cave spider, whip spider
Keeper experience: Beginner to Intermediate
Adult size: Over 8 inch leg span
Growth rate: Medium
Lifespan: Over 5 years, possibly 10 – 15 years
Type: Arboreal requiring wide vertically oriented cork bark slabs (or similar types of cage décor) for hiding, climbing, and molting
Temperament: Skittish and fast-moving but non-aggressive and rarely uses pincers defensively
Natural distribution: Tanzania, Kenya, Central Africa
Natural conditions: Thrives in tropical rainforests but also in savannah areas and caves. Found in cave entrances, rock crevices, and tree crannies.
Temperature: Mid 70’s to high 80’s
Humidity: 75% – 80% (Mist enclosures once or twice a week)
Substrate: 2 – 3 inches of damp Zoo Med Eco Earth Compressed Coconut Fiber Substrate
Prey items: Appropriately sized crickets and roaches
Gender identification: Adults are sexually dimorphic with a marked difference in the size of the pedipalps. The “elbows” of an adult males’ pedipalps (pincers) will extend beyond the “knee” joint of the first set of walking legs.
Miscellany: D. diadema exhibit social behavior with mothers and young siblings demonstrating the ability to communicate with each other. Breeding groups consisting of one male and two or more females have been successfully maintained in captivity with little threat of cannibalism as long as adequate food and shelter are provided.