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Posts Tagged ‘family Tetragnathidae’

I was focused so intently on getting a shot of this male Swift Setwing dragonfly (Dythemis velox) on Monday at Jackson Miles Abbott Wetland Refuge that I did notice that he was not alone on the small branch overhanging the waters of the small pond.

When I first pulled up the image on my computer,  I immediately noticed the strands of spider silk that looked like the guy line of a tent pole. It was only when I started to examine the branch closely, however, that I spotted the elongated shape of a Long-jawed Orb Weaver spider (family Tetragnathidae) perched below the dragonfly on the same branch.

The dragonfly was skittish and flew away when I got too close. I suspect that he was unaware of the fact that I was not the most immediate threat that he faced—danger was lurking from below on that branch that my experience had shown was a favorite perch for Swift Setwings.

Swift Setwing

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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I have not yet seen any large spiders this spring, but I have run across a few long-jawed spiders. The bodies of long-jawed orb weaver spiders of the Tetragnathidae family tend to be thin and they have extremely long legs of varying lengths. Most often I find them on vegetation overhanging the water, which in this case was a small pond at Jackson Miles Abbott Wetland Refuge.

long-jawed spider

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

 

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When you think of a spider, what kind of body do you imagine? I realize that most people don’t even want to think about spiders—they find them to be creepy and frightening.  For some of us, though, spiders are beautiful creatures with some amazing features.

Still, I don’t usually think of a spider as having a long, thin body, and most don’t. Last week I encountered one that had such a body, which I think is a kind of long-jawed spider from the  Tetragnathidae family. In addition to the elongated bodies, these spiders have legs of varying lengths, with the front pair appearing to be really long.

Spiders apparently come in all sizes and shapes. Who knows what new ones I’ll see in the coming months?

longjaw1_bloglongjaw2_blog

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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