Subject: Please help with this giant ant/spider look-a-like.
Location: San Diego, CA
November 20, 2015 7:44 pm
I am stumped with this bug and saw it for the first time in early spring in Southern California and just and now again at the end of fall. I’ve seen smaller versions which were hairy that looked like a small tarantula mixed with an ant, which made me think it was some type of velvet ant. It moves very fast and looks similar to a pseudoscorpion. The one pictured is the largest I have seen and has two very small eyes on top of its head, and crawled out from underneath my house. Thanks in advance for any help.
This is a predatory Solifugid, commonly called a Sun Spider or Wind Scorpion, but unlike its Arachnid namesakes, the Solifugid lacks venom, so it is not considered dangerous to humans. They do have strong mandibles and we would not recommend handling larger individuals which are capable of biting.