Tarantulas can be found in many parts of the world. They are particularly common in the American Southwest, South America and Central America. Several species of tarantulas reside within Arizona alone.
These species are spiders with leg spans measuring up to several centimeters. Their bodies may be black, light or dark brown in color and can weigh more several grams. Due to the leg span and hairy bodies of these arachnids, they appear menacing. However, tarantulas dwell underground and prefer to live, eat and hunt alone. Specimens are rarely seen in the open, although males do roam in search of potential mates.
Tarantulas in Arizona may also emerge at night in search of prey. Unlike other spiders, tarantulas found in Arizona do not build aerial webs as traps. Rather, they hunt or ambush prey, making use of their size and speed. Tarantulas consume beetles, grasshoppers, small spiders, reptiles and rodents. They may be prey to skunks, wasps and scorpions.