Pterinochilus murinus is an old-world tarantula that was first described in 1897 by Reginald Innes Pocock. This species is found on the African continent, in Angola, as well as central, eastern, and southern Africa. It is a member of the subfamily Harpactirinae, baboon spiders.
Among those who keep tarantulas as pets Pterinochilus murinus is known as “OBT”, which means “orange baboon tarantula” or “orange bitey thing” and also as the “pterror”, a pun on its Latin genus classification: Pterinochilus. These nicknames reference a particular orange colour form that is prized in the hobby for its beauty and confrontational personality. It is also known as the Mombasa golden starburst tarantula.
This species is incredibly defensive and, as with most old world tarantulas, should not be held. The bite of this species, while not serious, is extremely painful. Moreover, the species is more than willing to inflict such a bite before presenting the typical threat display. Caution when dealing with this species is strongly advised.
These spiders are not common in pet stores but are very popular in the pet trade. These spiders build a tunnel shaped web and as adults should be provided around 20 cm of substrate. They are commonly fed crickets, cockroaches, and grasshoppers. Though they can kill small vertebrates (mice, small lizards, birds, snakes), these feeder animals are not commonly used in captive care.
These spiders can be very defensive and are believed to have a very painful bite. Although their venom is not known to be lethal to humans, it is considered medically significant and thus it is advised to avoid handling this species.