To Boldly Go

or for the grammar mavens, To Go Boldly.

I found a Bold Jumping Spider (Salticidae: Phidippus audax), inside the house, running around near a window. Don’t let the photos fool you — this cute little spider is smaller than a dime, about a centimeter long. This was quite a difficult animal to shoot — it kept bouncing around, and I had to herd it back towards me by touching the wall to one side of it, so the photo’s not in complete focus.

When I got close enough to take a photo, it reared back and waved its pedipalpi (the “feelers” under the face) over its iridescent green chelicerae (fangs), a threat display which certainly caught my attention. This is a very common species of jumping spider; like the others in its genus, it has those gorgeous iridescent green chelicerae (I’m a sucker for iridescent greens and blues, ooh shiny).

Salticids have four large eyes at the front, which gives them superb vision for mating displays, and for running down and catching prey (the other four eyes are small and mostly for light-sensing). They eat all sorts of insects, including crop pests. As you might expect by its behavior to me, they are not the least bit shy or afraid around people, and inside homes can be found around windows and other sunny places. I have spent a lot of time watching, and in return, being watched by jumping spiders. If you want to catch one for a pet, they would be rather interesting to watch, as they are not overly sedentary.

The LOLspider

3 Comments

  1. Toni Trees said,

    27 June 2008 at 3:03

    My absolutely fave little spineless beastie! Not only attractive, but amusing. Embarrassed I never noticed the lovely chelicerae… Thanks, CotS, for linking me to this.

  2. 3 June 2008 at 11:48

    […] lovely pictures, you will wonder how spiders do chose their lipstick, for green is something quite audaxcious, as you’ll see following Andrea’s Buzzing… Maybe teasing with antennae is more […]

  3. Anna said,

    22 May 2008 at 1:34

    I TOLD you that thing was crawling around our house. And you didn’t believe me.


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