- Thousands of tarantulas are migrating in southeastern Colorado right now.
- Although to be accurate, it’s not so much migration as it is an emergence.
- As they do every mating season, the tarantulas surface in search of a mate.
- They scuttle about for indeterminate distances and lengths of time until they find a mate.
- But you end up in Colorado don’t expect to see thousands at once. At the peak of mating season, about 12 tarantulas are typically visible at a given time.
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It’s officially fall, so it can only mean one thing: Spider migration in southeastern Colorado.
Every year, Oklahoma Brown tarantulas living in areas like the Comanche National Grassland or nearby La Junta begin their annual migration in search of a mate, KDVR reported.
Here’s how it works: Male tarantulas surface from their burrows and search for a female to mate with, according to Live Science. The “migration” doesn’t follow a directional pattern and ceases on an individual basis when a tarantula finds a partner. Each tarantula will travel up to a mile, according to CNN, though during much of the year, tarantulas travel between just two and three inches from their burrows.
So, essentially, think of this time of year – August through October – as tarantula cuffing season.
The “migration” is supposed to reach its peak between late September and early October this year. In that window, tourists will be able to spot tarantulas in the middle of dirt roads and in broad daylight – especially in the morning when the temperature is cooler, according to KDVR.
“There are thousands moving but you’re not going to see thousands at one time. They don’t travel in a herd,” Michelle Stevens, a heritage resources and recreation program manager who works with the US Forest Service, told KVR.
Stephen Nielson, a former science teacher and current outdoor educator, echoed Stevens’ comments.
“Between La Junta and Trinidad, you might see 60 tarantulas,” he said. “Cars, you’ll see them swerving to dodge tarantulas.”
Stevens said that the tarantulas are generally pleasant in demeanor and encouraged visitors to get close to them, warning that they will only bite when provoked or threatened.
“All of those things that you associate with them – from maybe hearing about them being scary, freaky, all of that – none of that’s true,” Stevens said.
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