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Scorpion-tailed spider

Fact Box
Species:
Arachnura higginsi
(RM)
Family:
Araneidae
formerly Argiopidae
Body length:
female: 11 mm
male: 2 mm
Habitat:
This species sits in the centre of a small orb web in green shrubs; the smaller, tailless male may be found on the edge of this web; sometimes a single shrub has so many webs the species appears colonial, but each spider is on a separate web
Toxicity:
This small, timid species is probably harmless to humans
Arachnura higginsi
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The female
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With egg sacs
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Male and female
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A juvenile spider?

This spider was given its common name because it sometimes curls the end of its abdomen upwards in much the same way as a scorpion does. It usually rests on a strongly anchored silk thread at the end of a string of masses of insect debris and sometimes egg sacs as well. The web has the conventional orb shape of araneids.

There is some uncertainly as to whether the red spider included on this page is an immature version of the yellow-brown adult or is actually a different species. However, it should be noted that the red specimen shown here was of adult length and also had a mature epigynum, which suggests it may be a different species or sub-species.

Spider(s) with a very similar appearance: None.


Email Ron Atkinson for more information.    Last updated 5 April 2008.