Long legged spider / insect ???
Fri, Nov 21, 2008 at 5:27 AM
This creature is currently basking in the sun on the front of my new house wall. Location is central Scotland. Its legs are very long and almost create a fan shape. Its body is oval with a bit of hight to it and its legs resemble spider esk shape. We have fir trees at the back of the garden and I thought it might have come from there. I would really love to know what it is and if im likely to see more of them in the future.
Dear Mrs Brind,
We searched through 19 pages of images of Harvestmen in the order Opiliones in the hope of finding an example of an individual positioned like yours, but we were not successful. Harvestmen are related to spiders, but do not possess venom. They are harmless scavengers that are sometimes called Daddy Long Legs.
Hi Bugman and Mrs. Brind:
This looks like Dicranopalpus ramosus. Although harvestmen are quite harmless in a direct sense (to humans), this is apparently an exotic or ‘invasive’ species in Europe, so there may be some ecological implications. Apparently it originated in North Africa and has been spreading northward for some time, finally reaching Scotland in 2000. Because in is an invasive species there are quite a number of articles and photos on the internet. Wikipedia offers a brief summary at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dicranopalpus_ramosus Regards.
We were unable to open the Wikipedia page you cited, but we did find another website with good images of Dicranopalpus ramosus and we found a posting entitled UK Alien Invasion on the UK Independant website. Gradual species expansion like this is an often overlooked symptom of Global Warming.