View Full Version : Spider naturalists. Question.

06-28-2003, 06:02 PM
I like spiders. I know they can bite with nasty consequences, but I've never been bitten, that I know. So, when I see one I live and let live, and I suspect my house is clearer of other bugs than most.

This one appeared a few days ago, and seems to have taken up residence in and around my keyboard (no comments on my housekeeping). He, 'It' is really quite beautiful. About a quarter inch long, reddish copper on his abdomen.

What I'm wondering, does anyone know a good guide to spiders?

This one has a most interesting behavior. He jumps. The first time he did it I had my glasses off, and was quite close, trying to get a better look...looking him square in his eyes. smile.gif Startled the hell out of me. I suppose he was defending. I've since watched him jump quite a bit. About three inches seems his stretch.

Any thoughts on a field guide?

06-28-2003, 07:32 PM
Do a search on "jumping spider". I used to have one as a pet (until I, er, forgot to water it for a week... Now it's in a vial around here somewhere I think.) It looked like this:


Does the body shape look similar?


Edit: Oh yeah, I named it "Green Teeth" because of the way it's mandibles turned bright green when it got excited, like when I'd throw a live fly in the jar with it.


[ 06-28-2003, 08:35 PM: Message edited by: huisjen ]

km gresham
06-28-2003, 07:33 PM
Can't help you, Jack - all the spiders in my house are flat right after I notice them. ;) If the critters want to live they best remain outside!

06-28-2003, 07:51 PM
As I dropped my kayak into the water today, I noticed a fairly large spider scurrying around in the cockpit. I'm not a huge fan of being bitten by spiders, so I promptly flooded the cockpit, swished it all around, and drowned the hapless critter.

After that....a terrific 3 hours of paddling.


06-28-2003, 09:41 PM

Same body form, different colors. Similar abdomen color, though not so red, but his thorax is blond.

For those phobic, I know I'm a little odd, but I have an interaction with this little critter. I am odd, and I talk to him, and I think he listens. ;) He (I call it a he without knowing) comes out and expresses what I can only see as curiosity. Sitting right in front of me, looking. Right now he's doubtless hanging on a web beneath the desk somewhere.

06-29-2003, 08:19 AM
It's probably just waiting for you to drop your guard. When you do, it will inject you with a foul venom that will make you instantly fall into a deep sleep. Once you're asleep, it will lay eggs under the skin of your left armpit. Eventually you will wake up, and notice a small lump (like a mosquito bite) under your left arm, but this won't alarm you (due to the effects of the venom). In about 6 weeks, while you are sleeping, the eggs will hatch, and the baby spiders will chew their way out of the abcess under your arm, leaving a weeping sore that won't heal for days.....
I like spiders too! :D

[ 06-29-2003, 09:20 AM: Message edited by: Mrleft8 ]

km gresham
06-29-2003, 09:34 AM
The only spider I like is Charlotte. She could spell :D

Joe (SoCal)
06-29-2003, 09:54 AM
I think I found a girlfriend for Ish :D

[ 06-29-2003, 10:54 AM: Message edited by: Joe ( Cold Spring on Hudson ) ]

06-29-2003, 10:06 AM
Yep, that's a jumping spider then. They don't spin webs, but use a trail of silk as a safety line. Think mountaineer rather than sein netter. Their fangs are pretty short, and they're generally considered harmless to humans. They also have very good eyesight for a spider, with the ability to focus in and out. Colors vary. I don't know how many species there are. The biggest I've seen was about as big as a penny, or maybe a little bigger.

Green Teeth used to tackle flies three times his size. It's really quite a sporting event to watch.

National Geographic had an article on them a couple years back.


P.S. Don't let Joe set you up on any blind dates. I don't trust the looks of her. ;)

[ 06-29-2003, 11:13 AM: Message edited by: huisjen ]

06-29-2003, 07:21 PM
Joe, you're a nut! smile.gif


Thanks. I did a web-search (so to speak) and came up with lots of information. Didn't find my friend's, who's now disappeared, picture but it was interesting.

I've always been fascinated by all creatures, though I confess a phobia of stinging bee-like insects.

I think that people sell short their relationship to some of the 'icky' ones. He (convinced it was a boy spider, because of my research: bright colors) was/is quite personable in a spidery way. He would make his appearance in the early evening, scutter about, and jump most entertainingly. I swear he was interested in the fellow at the keyboard and, sensing I had no ill intent, was coming to have a bit or spider tourism. I could tell he saw me well, and that's borne out by the reading. Tales of spiders watching television!, of all things. The only sharp vision in the spider kingdom, used for their rather cat-like hunting.

He's likely decided there aren't too many bugs near. I hope he finds his way to a happier hunting place.

[ 06-30-2003, 12:43 PM: Message edited by: ishmael ]

ken mcclure
06-30-2003, 10:12 AM
Phobic, here, so no help. All spiders look dangerous to me - even if they are pretty.

The armchair psychiatrists could have a heydey with that.

06-30-2003, 11:41 AM

He's back! In fact he seemed to want a closer communion, so I let him hop on my hands, which he did briefly, then wanted off.

How'd you keep one as a pet? I took your brief hint of story to heart and killed a fly and presented it to 'Charly'. He looked really skinny, probably from hanging out inside. He's now, as I write, doing his spidery gustatory (yucky) :eek: on my desk.

06-30-2003, 12:15 PM
I kept him in a jar. It was the sort that has a shaker/pour lid, and I'd leave the shaker side open for air. Now and then I'd throw in a wet cotton ball for moisture, and I'd catch a housefly (stunned, but not dead) and throw it in too.

I don't think he ever really approved of being kept though. In retrospect, I certainly can't blame him: no girls, and at one point, not enough water. RIP.


06-30-2003, 12:22 PM
And Jack, I really think it would be better if either you and Sheba got a new puppy, or you got yourself a girlfriend.



Paul Scheuer
07-01-2003, 09:42 PM
".. At last! at last! I clutched it fast,
and gazed on it with pride.
I thrust it into a biscuit tin and closed it safe inside,
with a piece of glass for the light to pass,
and room to leap an play.
Oh, it stayed alive, yea seemed to thrive, as I watched it night and day.
And I used to sit and sing to it, and shielded it from harm.
And many a hearty feed it had on the heft of my hairy arm.
For you'll never know in that land of snow how lonesome a man can feel.
I made quite a fuss of the little cuss and christened it... Lucielle.."

You gotta get out more, Ish..

(from memory, appologies to Robert Service)