Scientific Name: Poecilotheria regalis
Indian ornamental spiders exhibit some social behaviour at times with small groups living close to each other provided food is plentiful. Juvenile and subadult spiders are more tolerant of the presence of others some even sharing meals together.
Beautifully patterned, the Indian ornamental has become a favourite amongst spider keepers overseas. These are large, very fast and aggressive spiders. Females will reach 18cm in leg span. They are intricately marked in shades of grey, and brown. The legs are usually banded above while on the underside they are black with patches of bright yellow on the front legs. This colour probably serves as a threat display as the yellow is exposed when the spiders raise their legs to defend themselves.
These are tree dwelling spiders from the forests of southeastern India. They are the ecological equivalents of Australia's huntsman spiders being fast, agile active hunters that do not build a web but shelter beneath loose tree bark or in hollow branches. They experience a pronounced and extended dry season when they may become somewhat dormant sheltering inside humid retreats.
Large insects, other spiders, scorpions, centipedes, small frogs and reptiles comprise the diet. These prey items are actively run down by this speedy hunter.
Indian ornamentals are very fast growing spiders. Males will reach maturity in around a year, while females take two or three years. Males pay for this rapid maturation with a shorter life expectancy, probably only 3-4 years, while some females have been recorded as living for 12 years.