Jumping spider

name = Jumping spiders

image_width = 250px
image_caption = A tiny spider of genus "Sandalodes", approx 10 mm in size
regnum = Animalia
fossil_range = Cretaceous [Grimaldi,D.A. et al. Fossiliferous Cretaceous Amber from Myanmar (Burma): Its Rediscovery, Biotic Diversity, and Paleontological Significance. American Museum Novitates, No 3361, 2002] - present
phylum = Arthropoda
classis = Arachnida
ordo = Araneae
zoosectio = Entelegynae
superfamilia = Salticoidea
familia = Salticidae
familia_authority = Blackwall, 1841
diversity_link = List of Salticidae species
diversity = 553 genera, 5025 species

range_map_width = 250px
subdivision_ranks = Subfamilies
subdivision =

















See List of Salticidae genera
The jumping spider family (Salticidae) contains more than 500 described genera and over 5,000 species, making it the largest family of spiders with about 13% of all species (Peng "et al.", 2002). Jumping spiders have good vision and use it for hunting and navigating. They are capable of jumping from place to place, secured by a silk tether. Both their book lungs and the tracheal system are well-developed, as they depend on both systems (bimodal breathing).


Jumping spiders live in a variety of habitats. Tropical forests harbor the most species, but they are also found in temperate forests, scrub lands, deserts, intertidal zones, and even mountains. Euophrys omnisuperstes is a species reported to have been collected at the highest elevation, on the slopes of Mt. Everest (Wanless, 1975). Certain species of Salticidae are quite common in Europe, such as the Zebra Jumping Spider "Salticus scenicus", which is commonly found resting on sun-warmed stone or brick walls.


Jumping spiders are generally recognized by their eye pattern. They typically have eight eyes arranged in two or three rows. The front, and most distinctive row is enlarged and forward facing to enable stereoscopic vision. The others are situated back on the cephalothorax.

Colours and patterns vary widely. Several species of jumping spiders appear to mimic ants, beetles, or pseudoscorpions. Others may appear to be parts of grass stems, bumps on twigs, bark, part of a rock or even part of a sand surface.


Jumping spiders are generally diurnal, active hunters. Their well developed internal hydraulic system extends their limbs by altering the pressure of body fluid (blood) within them. This enables the spiders to jump without having large muscular legs like a grasshopper. The jumping spider can therefore jump 20 to 60 or even 75-80 times the length of their body. When a jumping spider is moving from place to place, and especially just before it jumps, it tethers a filament of silk to whatever it is standing on. Should it fall for one reason or another, it climbs back up the silk tether.

Unlike almost all other spiders, they can quite easily climb on glass. Minute hairs and claws on their feet enable them to grip imperfections in the glass.

Jumping spiders also use their silk to weave small tent-like dwellings where females can protect their eggs, and which also serve as a shelter while moulting.

Jumping spiders are known for their curiosity. If approached by a human hand, instead of scuttling away to safety as most spiders do, the jumping spider will usually leap and turn to face the hand. Further approach may result in the spider jumping backwards while still eyeing the hand. The tiny creature will even raise its forelimbs and "hold its ground." Because of this contrast to other arachnids, the jumping spider is regarded as inquisitive as it is seemingly interested in whatever approaches it.Fact|date=April 2007


in the UV spectrum, suggesting a role in sexual signaling (Lim & Li, 2005). Color discrimination has been demonstrated in behavioral experiments.

The principal eyes have high resolution (11 min. visual angle) [http://jeb.biologists.org/cgi/content/abstract/51/2/443] , but the field of vision is narrow, from 2-5 degrees.

Because the retina is the darkest part of the eye and it moves around, one can sometimes look into the eye of a jumping spider and see it changing color. When it is darkest, you are looking into its retina and the spider is looking straight at you. [http://tolweb.org/accessory/Jumping_Spider_Vision?acc_id=1946]



Jumping spiders capture their prey by jumping on it from several inches away, and they may jump from twig to twig or leaf to leaf. They can jump many times their body length. They can carry out complex maneuvers such as detours around obstacles in order to reach their prey. Their eyesight is much better than the other spiders and most, if not all, insects. Most other spiders will only eat prey that they have captured live because they are unable to see dead prey (some long-legged sac spiders and anyphaenid sac spiders are exceptions as they recognize insect eggs as food) but jumping spiders will eat flies that have been killed for them. One jumping spider ("Evarcha culicivora") is even known to only capture mosquitos full of blood, using their eyesight and smell.

Nectar and pollen

Even if there are no spiders that are pure herbivores, there are some jumping spiders which include nectar and pollen in their diet (Jackson "et al.", 2001) and one species is sometimes predominantly an herbivore. So far none are known to feed on seeds. When insects land on plants such as the partridge pea, which offers the spiders nectar through their extrafloral nectaries, the jumping spiders help protect the plant in return by killing and eating insects that might damage the plant.

Spider species "Bagheera kiplingi", a species of jumping spiders, whose dietary habits were first discovered in 2001 and further detailed in 2008, obtains about 97% of its food from plant matter stolen from ants that co-exist with acacia trees in Latin America and have biochemical markers associated with herbivorious animals. [ [http://www.sciencenews.org/view/generic/id/35121/title/Vegetarian_spider Science News, "Vegetarian Spider"] ]


At least one species of jumping spiders, known as the Gliding Spider ("Maratus volans") from Australia, has an abdomen with two wing-like flaps that can be tucked underneath it when not in use. When the spider is leaping, it can use its flaps to extend the jump and glide short distances through the air.


Some jumping spiders may bite to protect themselves if disturbed. However, jumping spiders usually escape and hide, and will only bite if provoked and cornered. While the bite of a larger jumping spider can be painful, only a few species produce any other effects. Almost all spiders (except hackled orb-weavers) have venom, but the venom of most spiders is no worse than the venom of a bee. For more information of envenomation see the Spider bite article.


Jumping spiders use their vision in complex visual courtship displays. Males are often quite different in appearance than females and may have plumose hairs, colored or metallic hairs, front leg fringes, structures on other legs and other, often bizarre, modifications. These are used in visual courtship in which the colored or metallic parts of the body are displayed and complex sideling, vibrational or zigzag movements are performed in a courtship "dance." A 2008 study of "Phintella vittatain" in "Current Biology" suggested that female spiders reacted to the male reflecting ultraviolet B light before mating, a finding that challenges the previously held assumption that animals did not register ultraviolet B light. [Rebecca Morelle, [http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7378196.stm " Study sheds light on spider sex",] "BBC News", 2 May 2008.] In recent years it has been discovered that many jumping spiders may have auditory signals as well, with amplified sounds produced by the males sounding like buzzes or drum rolls. [Damian O. Elias "et al" [http://jeb.biologists.org/cgi/content/figsonly/206/22/4029 "Seismic signals in a courting male jumping spider"] (retrieved 11 July 2008)]


For many more pictures see commons|Salticidae

ee also

* List of Salticidae genera - List of Salticidae species
* Spider families


* (1953). "How to Know the Spiders", Dubuque, Iowa.
* (1954). "The Life of the Spider". Mentor.
* (1975). Spiders of the family Salticidae from the upper slopes of Everest and Makalu. "Bull. Br. arachnol. Soc." 3: 132-136.
* (1982). Vision and prey-catching strategies in jumping spiders. "American Scientist" 70: 165-175.
* (1982). The behavior of communicating in jumping spiders (Salticidae). In P. Witt and J. Rovner (eds)."Spider Communication Mechanisms and Ecological Significance", p. 213-247. Princeton, New Jersey.
* (1989). Spectral sensitivity in jumping spiders (Araneae, Salticidae). "Journal of Comparative Physiology A" 164: 359-363.
* (1992). A review of the ethology of jumping spiders (Araneae, Salticidae). "Bulletin of the British Arachnological Society, 9"33-37.
* Jaut|ackman, John A. (1997). "A Field Guide to Spiders & Scorpions of Texas". Gulf Publishing Company. Houston, Texas. p.127.
* (2000). 'Eight-legged cats' and how they see - a review of recent research on jumping spiders (Araneae: Salticidae). "Cimbebasia" 16: 231-240 [http://www.cogs.susx.ac.uk/ccnr/Papers/Downloads/Harland_Cimb2000.pdf PDF]
* (2000). Learning and discrimination of colored papers in jumping spiders (Araneae, Salticidae). "Journal of Comparative Physiology A" 186: 897-201.
*aut|Jackson, R.R., Nelson, X., Pollard, S.D., Edwards, G.B. & Barrion, A.T (2001). Jumping spiders (Araneae: Salticidae) that feed on nectar. "J. Zool. Lond." 255: 25-29. [http://xnelson.googlepages.com/Jacksonetal2001.pdf PDF]
* Michael Rhode(1983) Professor of Zoology at Oxford
* (2002). Five New and Four Newly Recorded Species of Jumping Spiders from Taiwan (Araneae: Salticidae). "Zoological Studies" 41(1): 1-12. [http://zoolstud.sinica.edu.tw/Journals/41.1/1.pdf PDF]
* (2003). Seismic signals in a courting male jumping spider (Araneae: Salticidae). "Journal of Experimental Biology" 206: 4029-4039.
* (2005). Extreme ultraviolet sexual dimorphism in jumping spiders (Araneae: Salticidae). "Biological Journal of the Linnean Society" 89: 397-406. DOI|10.1111/j.1095-8312.2006.00704.x
* (2005). Salticidae. pp.205-216 "in" D. Ubick, P. Paquin, P. E. Cushing, and V. Roth (eds.) "Spiders of North America: an identification manual." American Arachnological Society.

External links

* [http://www.jumping-spiders.com/ Comprehensive resource on the morphology and taxonomy of jumping spiders (Salticidae): www.jumping-spiders.com]
* [http://www.gsd-salt.miiz.waw.pl/ Global Species Database of Salticidae]
* [http://www.educatedearth.net/video.php?id=3676 Video of a jumping spider's mating behavior]
* [http://research.amnh.org/entomology/spiders/catalog/ World Spider Catalog]
* [http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&list_uids=11815656&dopt=Abstract Bimodal breathing in jumping spiders: morphometric partitioning of the lungs and tracheae in Salticus scenicus (Arachnida, Araneae, Salticidae).]
* [http://salticidae.org/jsotw.html Jumping Spiders of the World]
* [http://www.xs4all.nl/~ednieuw/Spiders/Salticidae/Salticidae.htm Jumping Spiders of NW-Europe]
* [http://www.xs4all.nl/~ednieuw/australian/salticidae/Salticidae.html Jumping spiders of Australia]
* [http://spiders.entomology.wisc.edu/Salticidae/index.html Jumping spiders of Wisconsin]
* [http://salticidae.next-it.hu/PDF/Key_gen_WAFR.pdf Generic key to the West-African salticid genera] (PDF, Hungarian/English)
* [http://tolweb.org/accessory/Movies_of_Jumping_Spider_Courtship?acc_id=64 Movies of "Habronattus" courtship behavior]
* [http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=322_1185412350 Male jumping spider courtship dance with contact microphone picking up and amplifying sounds]
* [http://creatures.ifas.ufl.edu/misc/regal_jumping_spider.htm regal jumping spider] on the UF / IFAS Featured Creatures Web site
* [http://creatures.ifas.ufl.edu/misc/jumping_spiders.htm "Menemerus bivittatus"] on the UF / IFAS Featured Creatures Web site
* [http://creatures.ifas.ufl.edu/misc/jumping_spiders.htm "Plexippus paykulli"] on the UF / IFAS Featured Creatures Web site

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