About Wolf Spiders!

bettaesthetic:

Baby wolf spider? Idk?? A cutie tho!! It has the same shapes and the same faint line down the back as well as the same position and length of legs and arms as a wolf spider. This one is just minuscule, so… a baby? Or am I mixing this guy up with another spidey?

Hello friend! Spiders can be really hard to identify because there are so many kinds, many of them look alike even if they are not closely related, and a single species can have so much variation in size, color, and shape that even experts will argue about them!

The key to figuring out what family a spider belongs to is eye arrangement. Here is a guide to spider families based on eye arrangement [link]. And by family, I mean taxonomy: kingdom, phylum, class, order, family, genus, species. Arachnid is the class, and Aranae is the order that includes all spiders.

Even though it’s hard to see the eyes with this spider’s dark face, I think this is a Sac Spider (family Clubionidae). Here is the bugguide page for Sac Spiders with lots of photos and more information [link]. I’ve seen lots of spiders like this, with and without their sacs 🙂 BUT! As I said, spider ID is really hard and I might be wrong!

About Wolf Spiders!

I have lots of wolf spider friends, though, and I’m pretty good at knowing when something is or isn’t a wolf spider (your spider friend is not a wolf). And about the size: adult wolf spiders come in all sorts of sizes!

Here is a very large Rabidosa rabida (Rabid Wolf Spider). I don’t like that name much, they are very sweet. I tend to put my finger in my photographs to give a sense of scale, and this lady is so big, my finger was “prey” size and I got a free hug! 😀

Here is a different species of wolf spider with the same finger (we’re holding hands)! I don’t know which species she is, though. And I know this is an adult because she has an egg sac. Wolf spiders carry their eggs in a sac under their abdomens, and they are the only kind of spiders who hold their eggs like this. A few other closely related spiders also carry their eggs, but I don’t remember which ones or how they hold them. :X

And the babies?

Mama Wolf gives piggyback rides to all her babies until they are large enough to fend for themselves!

Juvenile spiders tend to look mostly like their adult selves, especially in terms of body shape and proportion. So if you see a spider that looks like X spider but is too small, it could be a young one! Just get a good look at the eye arrangement!

July 4, 2018