Animals that eat tarantulas are weasels, skunks, owls, hawks, snakes, the spider-wasp and the bulldog raspy cricket. Parents in various countries around the world consider tarantulas an excellent source of protein for their children.
The spider-wasp is the tarantula's worst enemy. After a female spider-wasp stings a tarantula, she puts the paralyzed spider into a hole that she has dug along with one of her eggs. The tarantula remains buried alive until the egg hatches and the larvae devours it.
The bulldog raspy cricket has razor-sharp mandibles and sharp, spiny legs. They dine on tarantulas in the Australian bush.
In Cambodia, street vendors sell a delicacy called a-ping or fried tarantula. Cambodians began eating tarantulas during the Khmer Rouge regime that reigned between 1975 and 1979. Following four years of tragic food shortages, the Cambodian people realized that nurturing survival skills had resulted in a widely treasured tarantula treat. A-ping is eaten by Cambodian women who believe it enhances beauty. Eating the hairy creatures is also thought to cultivate healthy hair.
With appropriate heat and humidity, a tarantula can live in captivity for over 20 years. However, they have abdomens that rupture easily, so dropping a pet tarantula will likely cause its death.