Today we are going to look for little Jumpers. Most people call them Jumping Spiders or Salti’s as they are from the Salticidae family.
Yes, I jump too, but only when Mom has a treat for me. 😄
We found one! They love to hide behind the leaves. Mom says they are our friends and do not need to be killed. We have quite a few of them in our home as well.
They love flies! Where was this one when that fly landed on my nose? 😅
This little one’s scientific name is Hyllus argyrotoxus and she is a female. Mom found her name from Jumping Spiders of South Africa website and the lady there, Vida van der Walt, takes the most amazing photos of them. She also loves them as much as we do.
They have the most amazing eyes and it looks like they are wearing sunglasses. Jumping spiders have some of the best vision among arthropods and use it in courtship, hunting, and navigation.
We also found another beautiful Hyllus argyrotoxus female. She was guarding her cute little babies, so we did not bother her and Mom only took a few photos.
Mom said we must leave them just where they are, so they can grow up and catch the flies and other pests that doesn’t belong in our garden or home.
Mom says this little cutie is one of the Thyene species. As of 1 February 2019, the Salticidae family contained 636 described genera and 6115 described species of jumping spiders found in South Africa, all of which have venom that is considered to be harmless to humans.
When Mom finds them, some of them will jump on her hand and they will talk to each other. They seem to know Mom will not hurt them and not one of them ever bit Mom. Some people say they bite, but Mom says it’s not true at all and she would know, as she has handled quite a few of them.
In some cases, jumping spiders will bite in defense and are more likely to run away from people than attack them.
Unfortunately these spiders have been given a bad reputation by most people, even some in the medical profession, where they get the blame for mysterious (sometimes septic) bite marks on humans.
The fact is that a simple house fly is more dangerous to your health than the jumping spider.
Mom found another cutie from the species, Hasarius adansoni. Such big names for such little spiders. 😁
This one was also not scared of her. Mom says these little spiders are more afraid of us, than we are of them, but she loves it when they are not scared of her, because then she can take lots of photos of them. 🙂
The jumping spider is also the world’s first bungee jumper. When they spot a fly, they first secure silk to whatever steadfast surface they are standing on, then they jump at high speed towards the fly. That way, even if they miss, they won’t fall to the ground but can simply pull themselves up to safety.
So, whenever you see a tiny little Jumper, remember they are a great asset in our homes and gardens and you do not need to be scared of them. Just let them roam free and they will catch all the pesky flies, mosquitoes and other pests.
Wishing everyone a great and relaxing weekend.