Sunday, March 13, 2011
Spider surprise: The Sow Bug Killer
While weeding, I lifted up a rock and saw this fanged creature sitting quietly in the dirt. I quickly pulled out my camera, took this shot, and placed the rock back into place, very careful not to smush the guy.
In the Family Dysderidae, Dysdera crocata
Common name: Sow Bug Killer
Easy to find online since it is so distinctive: long orange legs, large shiny body, fangs. Apparently, this is an invasive species, originally from Europe. It is not known to bite humans as far as I can tell, though feel free to correct me if I am wrong. Rather, the fangs are used to pierce the armor of the sowbugs, plenty in my garden as you can see in the photo. In my eyes, he/she looks like a very shiny tarantula.
The local Natural History Museum site on the local spiders, scroll down
Berkeley based site, scroll down