Quarter size black spider that looks like a Tarantula
Location: Kasane, Botswana
January 14, 2011 6:10 pm
I found a Quarter size black spider that looks like a Tarantula. My issue is that it is right by my potted plants and I don’t know if it is venomous. I love spiders but I live in the middle of know where and would not be able to seek medical attention if neccessary. Thank you.
Signature: Laura Marchitto Massie

Unknown Spider

Hi Laura,
This is a True Spider in the infraorder Araneomorphae rather than a Tarantula in the infraorder Mygalomorphae, but we do not recognize it.  Those appendages at the tip of the abdomen are quite unusual and they should aid in the identification.  We are posting your email and images and we hope to be able to provide you with an ID in the near future.

Unknown Spider

Update:  December 4, 2012
We received a set of comments disputing our identification.  Stuart Longhorn indicates that this is most likely a member of the infraorder Mygalomorphae, though not a true Tarantula.

Location: Africa

6 Responses to Unknown Spider from Botswana

  1. lttlechkn says:

    The appendages at the tip of this spider’s abdomen are its spinnerets, but I am unable to find a matching specimen that is close enough for my liking. Sorry that I could not be of more assistance…

  2. stuart longhorn says:

    Sorry to disagree, it is very much a member of the infraorder Mygalomorphae which is a group name encompassing several families, tarantulas included. It is indeed not a tarantula but a mygalomorph of family Dipluridae. They are typically recognised by the exceptionally long spinnarets. One option is the genus Lathrothele, but is really poorly studied. The guy to talk to runs this website:
    http://www.dipluridae.de/wiki/index.php/Category:Ischnothelinae

  3. stuart longhorn says:

    Oh, importantly, i dont know any of these that is medically significant. Pretty much all spiders are venomous, but it’s the medically significant ones to take special note of, this isn’t one of them.

  4. Georgianne Brier says:

    Try checking the Baboon Spiders – Theraphosidae – to see if this one fits in. I have seen this spider in South Africa and they said it was from the Baboon Spider family however other Baboon Spiders I have seen in South Africa had much smaller appendages on the abdomen. Baboon Spiders are Native to South Africa but are also in Zambia and Botswana. Just suggesting a new thought on this spider as the rings on it’s legs seem very familiar to the ones
    on the Baboon spiders I have seen.

  5. Georgianne Brier says:

    Try checking the Baboon Spiders – Theraphosidae – to see if this one fits in. I have seen this spider in South Africa and they said it was from the Baboon Spider family however other Baboon Spiders I have seen in South Africa had much smaller appendages on the abdomen. Baboon Spiders are Native to South Africa but are also in Zambia and Botswana. Just suggesting a new thought on this spider as the rings on it’s legs seem very familiar to the ones
    on the Baboon spiders I have seen.

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