Subject: Unidentified Spider
Location: Manglayang Mountain, West Java, Indonesia
March 2, 2013 2:07 pm
I got another spider photo on 02/24/2013, It’s abdomen shape and color looks really beautiful.
he/she sits on a pine tree and the size is about 10 cm from toe to toe, first I found it on night hunting photos but I decide to take the picture again on the morning… and it still sits there on the same spot.
he/she does spins web, just like an orb but on the tree surface and he/she sits on the center.
Hope that you could help to identify this guy.
Signature: Mohamad Idham Iskandar
This is a very interesting and distinctive spider, and though we cannot say for certain what family it belongs to, we do not believe it is an Orbweaver. We will try to find an identification for you. Alas, we are currently experiencing technical difficulty and we cannot post anything live to the site, so all additions are on hold until our webmaster returns to the office.
Karl provides an identification:
Hi Daniel and Mohamad:
This beautiful spider is a Golden Orb Weaver in the family Nephilidae (formerly grouped under the Araneidae and Tetragnathidae). The genus is Herennia, and it has an Australasian distribution (India to the Solomon Islands). This is a very small genus with only 11 known species, usually referred to as Coin Spiders, most of which have been described only within the last decade. The island of Java apparently has two species; H. multipuncta is widespread throughout South and Southeast Asia and H. etruscilla is endemic to Java. There are several online images of H. multipuncta and they don’t match the one in this post. The definitive paper on the genus is “A Revision of Herennia (Araneae: Nephilidae: Nephilinae), the Australasian ‘coin spiders’ “ by Kuntner (2005), in which both the detailed descriptions and photos of H. etruscilla provide a very good match to Mohamad’s spider. The unique webs are referred to as ladder webs and if you are interested in learning more you can check out another paper by Kuntner et al. (2009) [see: 9fcfd50cb81b07c8ae]. These spiders also exhibit some interesting sexual behavior. They demonstrate extreme sexual dimorphism, not unusual among spiders, but once engaged in copulation the males stay put, acting as a genital plug that prevents other males from fertilizing the female. In addition to Coin Spiders, common names also include Ornamental Step Ladder Spiders and Ornamental Tree Trunk Spiders. Thanks Mohamad, for a very interesting submission. Regards. Karl
p.s. Daniel, my computer seems to have difficulty with hyperlinks to pdf files. Let me know if the links to the Kuntner papers don’t work and I can send you the full addresses. Karl
The link on the second Kuntner article from 2009 produced a file that we needed to save to our site and link that way. If you can provide the entire link, we might be able to link directly.