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webs and egg sacs
Opisthoncus polyphemus? (QM)|
(identification also derived from drawings on the salticid website of Jerzy Proszynski)
female: 6 mm|
male: about 7 mm
This spider is most often shaken from the green leaves of shrubs and low trees but may also be found in a leaf rolled into a tube for use as a retreat and as a place for depositing an egg sac
This spider's venom may cause local pain and inflammation
This is one of the many salticid species that can be found anywhere on trees or in green vegetation because of their great mobility. Opisthoncus species
are generally quite easy to recognize to genus because of a small 'lump' between the last pair of eyes. However, there are many known Australian
Opisthoncus species and for most of them one of the two sexes has not been adequately (it at all) described but is likely to have a very different
appearance when compared with the other sex. In addition, several of the more common species are sufficiently similar in appearance and surface markings
that they can only be distinguished from each other by a careful examination of their genitalia. The most recent and comprehensive review of the
Australian Opisthoncus species can be found in the following paper: Gardzinska J and Zabka M (2013) "Redescription of the genus Opisthoncus L. Koch,
1880 (Araneae: Salticidae)" Zootaxa 3717, 401-447. This paper contains many images of Opisthoncus species but unfortunately these are all of
preserved specimens which therefore have changed colour patterns. However, the description and images provided by Gardzinska and Zabka for O. polyphemus
match the spider shown above for it to be identified with reasonable confidence as a probable O. polyphemus specimen, although almost certainly an immature one.
Spider(s) with a very similar appearance: Several other Opisthoncus species.
Email Ron Atkinson for more information.
Last updated 21 December 2016.