October 27, 2010 3:44 pm
Hello Bugman. I came across this jumping spider (Species: Thiodina sylvana is my best guess) a few weeks back on a Friday evening after work. He was scurrying around rather frantically and as you can see, he was looking in dire need of a meal. I snapped a few pictures before he hid out. I went out shooting the next afternoon and I found what I think is the same jumper snacking on a moth. I love these little jumping spiders so I was happy to see him getting fed (at the poor Moth’s expense of course). It was really neat to be able to see her activity over the period of a couple of days.
Signature: Nathanael Siders
You are just about the perfect contributor. You have a catchy subject line for grabbing our attention. Your letter has content and you have identified a difficult challenge, though we still have to verify if we agree with your identification. You have gorgeous, perfectly sized images. In the past, we have cropped out copyright information if we needed to crop into the photos for posting purposes, but your images do not need to be cropped. The compositions are incredible. Thank you for taking the time to make such a valuable contribution to our website.
Ed. Note: We decided to verify the identity of this Jumping Spider on BugGuide, and we found Nathanael’s photos already posted. We agree with his identification but we think it is important to also indicate the variability of Thiodina sylvana by linking to this image of a black individual on BugGuide. We wonder how Nathanael is certain that this is not Thiodina puerpera.
Thank you so much for the nice comments. I am glad to hear you appreciate my contributions and will keep them coming if that’s okay. I had forgotten all about submitting those to bugguide.net. I did consider Thiodina puerpera but there are a few significant differences that I noticed. Mainly, the coloring on the top of the head is different between the two female species. In Thiodina puerpera, the top of the head seems to be mainly white and black whereas the Thiodina sylvana has orange areas mixed in. The orange present on the head of the spider in my photos, among some of the subtle patterns on the head are what led me to Thiodina sylvana. Not being an entomologist, I rarely feel confident enough to feel 100% sure, but I did a good bit of searching to find an ID on this “lady” and the Thiodina sylvana was the only species that fit all the characteristics of my spider as far as I could tell.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on my judgment call. Do you know if some female Thiodina puerpera that have orange on their head as well?
We hope you realize that we are not entomologists. Daniel teaches photography, and his assessment of the quality of your photographs has much more validity than any confirmation we might attempt regarding this species. We have located a photo of Thiodina sylvana that has orange coloration on the head, but it is a male, and it can be found on bugGuide.
I actually did think you all (or some) were entomologists. Daniel’s compliments on my photography mean that much more to be coming from a photography teacher. I appreciate all the interaction you have given me with my submission. You definitely have a wonderful site and I am happy to be able to contribute some of my photos.