The Running Crab Spider is always on the hunt for food, stealthily stalking and rapidly dispatching insect prey.
These fast-moving spiders are agile enough to outrun predators as well as human hands trying to collect them. Running Crab Spiders do not spin silk webs to catch an insect. They chase it down, bite it to inject spider venom, and then consume it when convenient. With such alarming speed, it is a comfort to many that this spider remains a small one.
The camouflage brown and tan mottling on a Running Crab Spider makes it difficult to spot it in leaf litter and on tree trunks if it sits motionless. The front pair of legs may look longer than the back legs, but they really are the same length. The way these front pairs of legs are held and how they are used when moving is similar to true Crab Spiders. It may be easy to mistake a Running Crab Spider for a Crab Spider as they are close relatives, but true Crab Spiders have much longer front legs than back legs.
Scientific Name: Philodromus spp.
Size (Adult; Length): 2mm to 11mm (0.08in to 0.43in)
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).