Finding a spider close by usually sets off alarms for insects, but the Red-spotted Ant Mimic Spider reaps the benefits of good behavior.
The Red-spotted Ant Mimic Spider acts like an ant to gain better positioning when attacking prey. It walks on its back six legs while raising the front pair as if they were antennae. This clever behavior relaxes other ants and insects into thinking the spider's presence is nothing to worry about. They are more likely to allow the spider to get close, making it easier for the spider to kill and eat them.
Red-spotted Ant Mimic Spiders are black. A large, bright red mark on the abdomen and a white line down the middle of the carapace are the only other colors on this arachnid. Legs are glossy black. Females use their spider silk to wrap eggs in a sac. They then attach the shiny egg sac to a rock or stone for safe-keeping. Spiderlings overwinter and hatch in the spring, leaving their siblings to find their own way. All adults spin silken sacs for themselves to rest in. These silken sacs are typically hidden near anthills or ant colonies either in a leaf, in bark cracks, or on a node (where a new branch or tree starts growing). This allows the spider privacy without losing advantageous proximity. Look for this spider in a variety of habitats including woods, under stones, on shrubs, or in parks.
Scientific Name: Castianeira descripta
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).