With long, outstretched front legs, Crab Spiders bear a resemblance to their crustacean cousins even though they don't always walk sideways.
Crab Spiders are commonly seen in flowers where they wait for insects to wander by. Fast and agile, the Crab Spider can capture a fly, bee, or beetle and inject venom to paralyze it. The long front legs may be used to help hold down large, or struggling insects. Strong jaws help Crab Spider inject venom into prey, and their strong legs carry it back to a retreat for consumption.
The species of Crab Spiders in the Mecaphesa genus have tiny hairs protruding from the head, legs, and body. Look for them on flowers, under petals or on adjacent leaves. They may be green, yellow, white, red, brown or a mix of many colors, making them difficult to spot on bright petals and blooms.
Scientific Name: Mecaphesa spp.
Other Name(s): Flower Spider
Size (Adult; Length): 5mm to 10mm (0.20in to 0.39in)
Note: An insect's reach is not limited by lines drawn on a map and therefore species may appear in areas, regions and/or states beyond those listed above as they are driven by environmental factors (such as climate change), available food supplies and mating patterns. Grayed-out selections indicate that the subject in question has not been reported in that particular territory. U.S. states and Canadian provinces / territories are clickable to their respective bug listings.
Legs: Spiders have four pairs of legs and these are attached to the cephalothorax.
Pedipalps: Small appendages near the mouth used as taste and smell organs.
Cephalothorax: Contains eyes, head, mouthparts, and legs.
Abdomen: Contains various organs related to digestion, reproduction, and web-making.
Spinnerets: Used in the production of spider silk for fashioning webs or catching prey.
NOTE: Unlike insects, spiders have both an endoskeleton (internal) and exoskeleton (external).