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jumping spider


What’s in news?

A group of jumping spiders has been spotted for the first time in Ernakulam’s Illithodu forests by arachnologists from Kochi’s Sacred Heart College, Thevara.

Key data’s:

  • A group of jumping spiders that mostly occur in the parts of Eurasia and Africa but never in India till now.
  • The team also found that the spider belonging to the genus “Habrocestum” is a species new to science.
  • The team came across the different-looking spiders — six of them, predominantly brownish-black in colour with white and creamy-yellow patches while conducting a routine survey in the Illithodu reserve forests of the Malayatoor forest division.
  • In the laboratory, they underwent a probe of the physical features of males and females and also they were compared with the similar-looking spider specimens collected earlier from the Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary.
  • Studies of European Habrocestumspiders revealed that the spiders from Illithode forest division are a new species as they had distinctly different reproductive organs.
  • The spider also has a single long spine on the underside of both its first legs, and this gave it its scientific name Habrocestumlongispinumand measures just around 2 mm and seems to prefer dry habitats, dwelling in forest.
  • Threats could include unregulated tourism activities and even climate change.
  • Finally, the discovery also lends support to the continental drift theory that suggests that the world’s continents were one large, contiguous landmass where these creatures thrived many millions of years ago.

Jumping Spiders:

  • Jumping spidersare a group of spiders that constitute the family Salticidae. As at 1 February 2019, this family contained 636 described genera and 6115 described species making it the largest family of spidersat 13% of all species.
  • Jumping spiders have some of the best vision among arthropods and use it in courtship, hunting, and navigation.
  • Jumping spiders are generally recognized by their eye pattern. All jumping spiders have four pairs of eyes, with the anterior median pair being particularly large.
  • Jumping spiders are generally diurnal, active hunters. Their well-developed internal hydraulic system extends their limbs by altering the pressure of body fluid within them. This enables the spiders to jump without having large muscular legs like a grasshopper. Most jumping spiders can jump several times the length of their bodies.

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