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Free images -  Arachnids - Spiders

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Right click on any portion of the image showing and chose "save as".  

 

 

"If you want to live and thrive, let the spider run alive."

~ American Quaker Saying ~

 

► Did you know...

that while spiders are related to insects, they are very different? Both are arthropods - meaning that they both have a skeleton outside their bodies (exoskeleton) and jointed legs.  Spiders, however, are more closely related to mites, ticks and scorpions, all of which are known as "arachnids".

Differences between Spiders and Insects -

Spiders Insects
Body parts 2 - Cephalothorax & abdomen 3 - Head, thorax & abdomen
Wings None Four, two or none.
Legs Eight Six
Eyes Simple- usually 8 Compound - 2
Antennae None Two
Mouth Fangs (Chelicerae) Jaws (Mandibles)

 

Spiders are invertebrate creatures that spin webs as their homes.  Spiders have up to eight eyes, eight legs and seven silk-producing glands in their abdomen.  The glands produce proteins that are extruded through "spinnerets" to produce different kinds of silk.  The silk hardens as it comes into contact with the air.  Some silk is sticky and some not.

The spider webs that we are most familiar with are called "orbs".  These look like spokes radiating out from the center.

Spider webs are fascinating objects that are both strong and stretchy.  According to a civil and environmental engineer at MIT, spider silk, pound-for-pound, is stronger than steel!

 

► Did you know...   

that according to the US Library of Congress, spiders often have poor eyesight and weave their webs using only their sense of touch!

silk produced by young spiders called "spiderlings" sometimes allows them to be carried by the wind and air currents.  This is called "ballooning".

Please note:  I am NOT an entomologist nor a specialist in the study of Entomology which is the scientific study of insects.  While I have identified certain species, my identification should not be seen as scientific fact.  If I have identified something incorrectly, please do notify me. 

 

Mexican Red-Kneed Tarantula

 

Mexican Red-kneed Tarantula spider

Tarantula - 1

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Mexican Red-kneed Tarantula spider

Tarantula - 2

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Araneus diadematus

Araneus diadematus is commonly known as the "European Garden Spider, Diadem Spider, Cross Spider, or Cross Orbweaver".  This species is found in Europe and parts of the North America.  

This species can be identified by the markings on its back with five or more large white dots forming what looks somewheat like a cross.  Adult females range from 6.5 to 20 mm in length, while adult males are 5.5 to 13 mm.

The specimens below were photographed beside the foliage by a northern Ontario lake.

 

Brown Ontario Garden Spider Araneus diadematus

Araneus diadematus - 1

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Brown garden spider on green leaf.

Araneus diadematus - 2

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Brown garden spider with white markings on green leaf.

Araneus diadematus - 3

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Araneus diadematus brown garden spider furry legs.

Araneus diadematus - 4

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Clubiona riparia

Clubiona riparia is a member of the Clubionidae family, is commonly known as the "Riparian Sac Spider" or the "Leaf-curling Sac Spider" and is found from Alaska to Newfoundland, southward to New Mexico and Maryland.  It prefers to inhabit tall grass in marshes or near lakes.  Some have been found in mixed conifer-deciduous forests.

On a recent camping trip, I was fortunate to have noticed these little triangular grass packages beside a northern Ontario lake.  The female spiders must have known exactly what plant/grass blades to use, how high and large to build their capsules, and how tightly to seal their edges.  The weather was terribly cold with a downpour of rain and high winds.  The grass was blown back and forth violently and drenched with water, yet all the strong capsules held their precious cargo intact.

 

Folded grass egg capsule Clubiona ripario

Clubiona riparia - 1

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Folded grass nest of Leaf-curling Sac Spider

Clubiona riparia - 2

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Folded leaf nest of Leaf-curling Sac Spider

Clubiona riparia - 3

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Sac spider nest of folded grass

Clubiona riparia - 4

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Leaf-curling Sac Spider

Clubiona riparia - 5

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Leaf-curling Sac Spider

Clubiona riparia - 6
See the female hiding in the egg capsule?

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Sac spiders are fascinating creatures in that they do not spin webs, but rather build silken retreats or sacs on plants, between leaves, under bark or stones.  These spiders are typically 5-12 mm in length, are pale in colour, and have eight legs.

The females of the Leaf-curling Spider build three-sided capsules into which they enclose both themselves and their eggs.

Capsules are constructed by bending a single blade of grass or other leaf matter twice.  Each fold is perpendicular to the long axis of the blade.  The edges are then joined with silk.

According to a 2011 study conducted in a marsh in central Ontario by The American Arachnological Society entitled "Egg capsule architecture and siting in a leaf-curling sac spider, Clubiona riparia"  this species of spider also used the leaves of Cattails, Iris, and a Willow Shrub.

The AAS study quoted J.H. Constock, The Spider Book, 1948, and described the capsules as both a nursery for the spiderlings and a coffin for the parent.

A fascinating note is the fact that all capsules I spotted were constructed using a pair of either clockwise or counterclockwise bends.  

 

Female Leaf-curling Sac Spider

Clubiona riparia - 7

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Spider Image Pages  [1]   [2]   [3]

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If you'd like to drop me a note to let me know if any of these images have been useful, I'd love to hear from you. I'm curious to see if my snapshots have been of benefit to you in some way.  Also, I'd like to hear what kind of images you'd like to see more of. 

 

 


 

Are You Baffled 
by Bugs ?

Did you know...

That all insects are bugs, but not all bugs are insects!

 


"I dreamed
 I was a butterfly,
 flitting around 
in the sky; 
then I awoke.  
Now I wonder:  
Am I a man 
who dreamt 
of being a butterfly, 
or am I a butterfly
dreaming 
that I am a man?"

~ Chuang Tse ~
Chinese philosopher

 

Insects have 3 body parts:  a head, thorax and abdomen.  They also have six legs and two antennae.

Spiders and Scorpions have eight legs and are not considered insects!

 

According to some sources, the total number of insect species is somewhere between 15 and 30 million!

There are 900,000 known species in the world.

 

Insane About Insects ?

 

Did you know...

Scorpions can live for more than one year without eating!

 

Mosquitoes have 47 teeth, but only the female mosquitoe bites using it's proboscis.

Fireflies, sometimes called Lightningbugs, are not true bugs or flies.  They are beetles!

Every year, insects eat about one third of the world's food crops.

Only male crickets can chirp.  They will chirp faster in warm weather.  

Most insects hatch from eggs.

The average bed contains 2-6 million dust mites!

 

Are You An Enthusiastic
Entomologist ?

Did you know...

Every year, the average person eats several insects while sleeping.  

Insects breath through a complicated network of air tubes called tracheae that open along the sides of the insects body.

Nearly all insect growth involves metamorphosis.

The average housefly lives only two weeks!

A female ladybug lays about 1000 eggs in her lifetime.

Honeybees fly at a speed of 13-15 mph.

Even though spiders have eight eyes, they still can't see very well.

A cockroach can live up to 9 days without its head!

 

 

 

 

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