Spider carrying orange orbs
Sun, Oct 12, 2008 at 6:53 AM
I found this spider while digging a trench in my lawn in April, 2008. There was no web in sight. The spider seemed to be just walking along. My first thought was that it was carrying it’s eggs somewhere. I took a few pictures, then continued with my trench. After a few days, I began to wonder exactly what kind of spider it was and what it was doing, but haven’t been able to find out any more information. Thanks for your help.
Coastal southern California

Harvestman with Parasitic Mites

Harvestman with Parasitic Mites

Hi TJ1028,
Your spider is actually another type of Arachnid in the order Opiliones, commonly called a Harvestman or Daddy-Long-Legs.  The orange orbs appear to be Parasitic Mites in the genus Leptus.  We originally thought the Mites were merely hitching a ride, a phenomenon known as Phoresy, but a search of BugGuide revealed the parasitic nature of the Mites.  There is some good dialog contributed by the BugGuide readership on the genus Leptus.

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