Saturday 12 March 2011

Dysdera crocata showing its impressive fangs

I was moving some pots outside when I found a female Dysdera, the Woodlice hunting spider: an excellent subject for my breakfast bowl technique. I carefully put the spider in a little plastic bug pot, grab the bowl and camera and go outside. Despite the sun, with no flash the spider colours do not come out very well so I use a flash. I want a shot of the fangs so I gently tickle them with a piece of grass and voila! the spider delivers. I can check later that it has got spines on the upper side of the femur in the back legs (see photo below), which is the character that identifies it as a D. crocata, and separates it from Dysdera erythrina, the other British species. D. crocata is also more often found in gardens, and reaches a more northern distribution than D. erythrina.

1 comment:

Robin said...

Had one of these in my tent one night while meditating for a hundred days in the Willapa Hills (state of Washington in the US.) Not my first choice of companion.

Apparently they're not native here, though I imagine they've had no problems with our North Coast climate, which is much like that of western Scotland.

Great photos!


Rusty Ring: Reflections of an Old-Timey Hermit