Posts Tagged ‘Long-jawed Orb Weaver’

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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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?


© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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With my macro lens on my camera on Monday, I was happily scouring every plant and flower for insects to photograph when I came upon this unusual-looking spider. Instead of having a rounded body like most spiders, it had a really elongated body and what appeared to be legs of varying lengths.

I have purposely attached a clickable higher resolution image to give you a better look at the details of this strange spider. For example, I think I can see at least two rows of tiny eyes in the middle of the photo.

Last year, I photographed a similar spider and I think that it is probably a kind of Long-jawed Orbweaver, though I can’t make a more definite identification.

What mental image do you have when you think of a spider? Perhaps this photo will help you broaden your perspective about what a spider might look like.


Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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