Ed Note:  August 30, 2016
The sudden number of comments on this old posting has us concerned.  We are going to attempt to research why populations of this introduced species are suddenly on the rise.  We are also going to tag this as an Invasive Exotic species as we suspect it might be displacing native Jumping Spiders.  Finally, we are going to Feature this posting on our homepage until we discover any information on the sudden number of recent comments.

What is this insect?
Location: NE Ohio
August 16, 2011 4:10 pm
Hello, I am finding this bug in my home – mostly in the kitchen and bathroom. They are fast and seem pretty smart. Do you think it may be a carpenter ant of some sort?
Signature: Curious in Ohio

Ant Mimic Jumping Spider

Dear Curious in Ohio,
This is a spider, not an insect.  It is an Ant Mimic Jumping Spider,
Myrmarachne formicaria.  Jumping Spiders are hunting spiders that do not snare their prey.  They have excellent eyesight and can capture prey much larger than themselves, including flies.  BugGuide contains this very interesting fact regarding the range of this European introduction:  “The first specimen records of M. formicaria from North America have all been from Ohio, USA: from Warren, Trumble County on 16 August 2001; the J.H. Barrow Field Station, Portage County on 15 September 2002; and at a residence near Peninsula, Summit County.”

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Location: Ohio

121 Responses to Ant Mimic Jumping Spider

  1. antspider says:

    It seems these are becoming pretty prolific in Northeast Ohio–I’ve seen two in Ashtabula County in the last week!

    The front legs almost look like antennae. Were it not for the suspicious vise-looking front, I probably would have given them the benefit of the doubt as being ants and not looked into it!

    • bugman says:

      They truly are effective mimics.

    • Aaron says:

      a little late commenting but I renovated a house in seven hills. They are everywhere. behind baseboards, every room except bedrooms. Cant turn around without seeing 5 of them. look like ants til you see them hanging from lines. Looking for best way to exterminate time

    • Kayla says:

      I JUST found one in my hallway. I live in northern Massachusetts and noticed it had eight legs rather than six, and recoiled at the thought of yet another spider in doors. At first glance I thought it was an ant though. Never seen this creature before today.

      • Juls says:

        We have them in Buffalo NY I left them alone to live in the house. They seem small enough to share space with however i found in bedroom and i keep getting bits from something.
        I HAVE more bits than the dog! So I know its not fleas! I will release it outdoors.

        • Emily says:

          I’m in Syracuse. I have never seen these before this year and they have literally invaded my house!

        • James Damon says:

          Rochester, NY. Found one inside dangling. I was taken aback as I had never encountered a spider that looks exactly like a red species of ant.

    • Jesse says:

      I’ve seen three of these crawling across my monitor at work within the past couple of weeks here in Mentor, OH.

  2. NatureFreak says:

    Seen today in Portage County, OH. We thought it was an ant hanging from a spider web, but on further inspection, it was SPINNING the web!

  3. Desarae says:

    Pretty sure I just found one in my apartment.. I live in Canada..

    • Jon says:

      Think this is what was in my shower today. It was almost 1.5″ around! Huge thing. Tried to crush it with a shampoo bottle but it ran into the cover around the shower head pipe. Finished my shower (with one eye open) and then emptied half a can of Raid onto that punk!

  4. Joely says:

    I saw one just like that in my apartment i live in tx

  5. angel says:

    Does this minic spider bite ? I have seen two in my house the pastweek and thought they were ants…. should I be worried ? Beacuse I am lol

    • bugman says:

      It is doubtful they would bite, but if they did, they are not considered to be a dangerous species.

      • saw one in my home today says:

        I read online that they do bite when trapped for defense. Not dangerous but the bite could be painful for a few days.

    • Terry says:

      They won’t bite. I like to sit out in my yard and wait for them to show up so I can photograph them. They seem curious. Jumping spiders of all kinds like to climb on me (cuz I don’t brush them off) and they like to jump on my camera lens. They will not hurt a human being, so let’s not hurt them! They are quite cute and fascinating.

  6. Misty says:

    Spotted several traveling through our house in Western PA recently. We also saw them this time last year but didn’t investigate as closely, assuming some ants had found their way in. Really interesting!

  7. ackroyd says:

    i found and captured an ant mimic jumping spider just now, i tried to take pictures of it but it moves fast, blurring the picture. Bugman, I am from southern part of the philippines, so it is safe to say that this kind of arachnid is found dispersed. However, this ant mimic is different, it really looked like a black ant, difficult to distinguish, yet it has movements very different to black ants.

    • Zualtea_Renthlei says:

      a colony of spider-ants just moved in near our house.. small, black, fast, looks like ants and prey on small insects.. and have webs. NE India

  8. effspiders says:

    There was one on my mom’s porch window all day today. We live in NE Tennessee close to VA boarder. Guess they’re not so northern :/

  9. K says:

    I just found one identical to this in Okinawa Japan. Really remarkable creatures!

  10. River song says:

    Here in Buffalo New York just found one drinking water out of my dogs water bowl. That would be ant mimic jumping spider number 3. Took that Sucker right outside. They are very observant and look right at you. One bit my daughter but nothing happened, thank goodness. Those things are freaky looking.

  11. Briarbeard says:

    Thanks for posting this! We just found one in Yangon, Myanmar (Rangoon, Burma) SE Asia.

  12. Alicia Kelley says:

    One almost jumped on my daughter and we’re in Raleigh, NC. Oddly enough we moved here 10 years ago from Mahoning County, Ohio! This is the scariest looking thing I’ve seen in a while and we have a lot of creepy bugs down here. UGH!

    • bugman says:

      Our editorial staff moved from Mahoning County in 1979, but we still return to visit relatives.

  13. Vicki Lapidus says:

    Western PA. Just found one dangling from ceiling fan. This is the first one I have seen.

  14. Terry says:

    I’ve seen two on separate occasions in my yard in Minnesota.
    Please don’t squash these or any other spiders!
    They won’t hurt you and they are really cool to watch closeup.

  15. Laurie says:

    Bugman – can you please clarify if this Ant Mimic Jumping Spider can also produce a web or thread? I found one (on me!) inside my house today. I went to the door with it in my hand to take outside, and it repeatedly used a web to drop down from my hand. I was so surprised I put it in a container instead, to do some research before I let it go. I looked up “spider that looks like an ant”, and when I saw the pictures, I didn’t think this was the same – at first. Upon closer inspection, I realized that it DOES have those flat pinchers in front.

    I also saw a post saying someone had found a “male”. How can you tell?

    I’m just outside Buffalo, NY, very close to Lake Erie.

    • bugman says:

      Most all spiders can spin silk that they use for a variety of reasons, but some species do not use silk to spin a web to snare prey. Ant Mimic Jumping Spiders would spin silk for the purposes you describe. Many male spiders have enlarged pedipalps, the first set of appendages before the legs.

  16. staci says:

    Los Angeles area – yes, we have them 🙁 Been looking online for what I found in my bed yesterday. Looks like robust ant, but larger, and boy does it move fast!! I knew it wasn’t an ant, and was probably a spider – waaaah

  17. Brian cart says:

    I just found one in volant pa it was amazing

  18. Angela says:

    Yep just found one dangling from a thread at the front door. Western pa, mercer county. Odd little thing.

  19. Karen says:

    These have all the sudden exploded here..Never seen them before. McKean, Pa..Just south of Erie. Thought they were red carpenter ants, there were several in the door jam of my screen door, now have seen a few inside. They jump very high and very quickly. Neighbors and friends in other towns are noticing them too. Is there any concern? I have a toddler.

    • bugman says:

      Jumping Spiders are not a threat to humans.

      • Karen says:

        Aware of that, thank you. Not particularly fond of things in my home biting my children. Heard they were not something I wanted inside my home. Wanted to clear up the rumors. Perhaps a little less sarcasm next time would be nice.

    • Jane says:

      I am also in McKean. They are all over my house. We have tons of spiders in and outside. Never seen so many anywhere. We love watching the orb spiders which live in every outside corner and nook. I have been a bit concerned for my littles, though. My research says they are all pretty harmless, so we let them be.

  20. Harold says:

    Just found this interesting spider on my car in Binghamton, NY.

  21. Diana says:

    I seem to have a considerable number of them in my house. I see perhaps 3-5 a day. NE OH.

    And I am SO relieved to find that they are jumping spiders and not some ant tearing my house apart from the inside out.

    For some odd reason, I’m a jumping spider fan; so they are welcome.

  22. Michele Denning says:

    I live in Erie Pennsylvania and I have these coming in my house. I thought it was an ant until I seen it coming down with webbing coming out of its but. They seem very fast to move when you put your finger buy it or it jumps. I can’t believe how good of eye sight they have. Haven’t seen any all summer until 2 weeks ago. Now they keep trying to get in.

  23. Jeannie Wilkes says:

    Ashtabula Ohio.I just had what looked like an ant on a tomato in my windowsill. I picked up the tomato and it dropped with a web. It’s black and red and looks like an ant. I googled ants with webs and this is what I came across and I am sure this is what it is. I don’t like bugs but I can handle ants better than spiders in my house !!

  24. Michelle says:

    We are in Ashtabula Ohio and I seriously have them all over they are on my car then on the door step. Now in my bathrooms and kitchens! I want them to go awayyyyyyy they’re creeping me and my children out!!! Any suggestions on how to get them to leave? I have peppermint oil I think I’m going to spray. That won’t kill them just make them not want to come around right??

    • bugman says:

      Perhaps one of our readers will be able to provide a good deterrent for you as we have no suggestions. We are going to research the sudden number of comments that are appearing on this posting, which tends to indicate there is a sudden population explosion of Ant Mimic Jumping Spiders.

      • Matt B. says:

        Could the dryer than usual conditions for the region this summer be one of the factors to their sudden population increase?

        • bugman says:

          According to BugGuide, this is not a native species and “The first specimen records of M. formicaria from North America have all been from Ohio, USA: from Warren, Trumble County on 16 August 2001; the J.H. Barrow Field Station, Portage County on 15 September 2002; and at a residence near Peninsula, Summit County. Additional individuals have been observed by the third author in and around the J.H. Barrow Field Station and the Peninsula residence during the summers of 2003 and 2004. (Bradley et al. 2006)” Without natural predators, conditions must be right for population increases.

  25. Dustin says:

    They are in New York now to cause they are all over in my house and they are freaky smart and aggressive even to people they will chase me lol

  26. Matt B. says:

    Just found one on my shower curtain. I live in Central New York. 25 mins north of the city of Syracuse. Wasn’t sure what it was till I saw this Webpage. Seems like they are becoming more wide spread in the northeast.

  27. Ewthatsgross says:

    Ive been finding them all over the place for the past few weeks, the walls, the doors, i see at least 2 every day id say. They sure do love the James H. Barrow FS location

  28. Jane says:

    Interestingly, I grew up in Trumbull County Ohio just outside of Warren. I have been in Erie County Pennsylvania for the last 12 years. I never encountered one of these little spiders until our recent move to our new house in McKean, Pa (still Erie County). We have a ton of them, along with many other spiders. My dad, who still lives on a farm in Trumbull County, was the only person who could tell me what they were. Interesting little species. Would love to know how they managed to invade and migrate!

  29. William Tilton says:

    Have them all over a table out side of work ..They come out from below the table and are often found running around on are clothes coming back into work .. Lmao.. Lockport NY

  30. Cindy says:

    I’m finding about 40 a day. Everywhere! Melbourne Ontario, Canada.

  31. Kerry says:

    I’ve seen these in my house the past few days. Have never seen them before. Btw, I’m in Lancaster, NY

    • Tony says:

      Just so that you know I’m from the Alden Lancaster border. I first saw this last year I thought it was an ant as well. And now I’m seeing them again this year which prompted me to do a little bit of research they’re cool little creatures but definitely seeing them for the first time over the last couple years. Lived in the area most of my life, and I don’t recall ever seeing them in the past.

  32. Heather says:

    I tried looking this up last week, as I find at least ten of these in my home each day the past couple weeks, and found your article; finding your update that everyone else is suddenly experiencing them too has me super freaked out.

  33. Marilyn says:

    found this ant on my kitchen table when I bushed him off I looked to see where he was and he was hanging on a web from the edge of the table. I put him on the table and killed him gently I have some bites was it him itched for a short time.

    • Terry says:

      Well, clap clap clap. You killed a harmless spider who did not bite you and in fact was probably hunting for whatever bug it was that did bite you. I’ve seen a baby jumping spider on its first foray beyond the nest try to attack a fly 50 times it’s size. And yet you would kill one of these courageous little heroes. For shame. Next time please think twice.

  34. Krystal says:

    We had these all summer and still do in Stark County Ohio, lots and lots of them.

  35. Paul Taylor says:

    Caught a couple of them in my home in Port Robinson, Ontario, also seen one at my brothers house. Looks like their moving around pretty fast.

  36. Madeeha says:

    I found one inside my home and thought it was an ant but thought maybe some different kind of ant because it was a little different looking. Then while sitting outside on the patio I saw one hanging from a web! I thought wow! I didn’t know ants could hang from webs! I then thought maybe its an old web until I saw it climb back up the web and then I was convinced this was some kind of spider. Very neat little creatures I have yet to see it jump though. Finding them in Buffalo NY.

  37. Renee says:

    Just recently, we have these. Just noticed that they had a web when I pushed it off the picnic table yesterday. We thought it was weird. Just had another one in my kitchen that did the same thing when I pushed it into the sink. We live in northwestern Pennsylvania, near the town of North East.

  38. Carl says:

    Brockport NY (Just West of Rochester) has them. Seen them outside of house as Summer drags on, but never in groups like ants… just singles… then found a couple roaming inside the house a couple weeks later. Saw one on a bike in the garage this morning and when I went to ‘get it’… it dropped with a silk line. Small like an ant. Red middle… just like the picture. looked up silk spinning ant and got this. bingo. thanks Google and Whatsthatbug. Now- what to do about them?

    • Jennifer says:

      I have them too. This is the first time i have ever seen them in brockport ny. I see one or two a day. Will the peppermint spray really work?

  39. merle says:

    i believe my wife may have found and captured one it looks like it has ant antenae and a ant body black on the rear black on the head red in the middle it can spin webs it look like it has an ant head as well as body it does not look like its carrying anything i dont see any thing that looks like pincers like there are in the picture above it does jump but it looks exactly like an ant no difference i can see. if its a spider theres no sign of that at all. i have it in a see through container. if what looks like its antenae are legs maybe a spider but doesnt look at all anyway like one would be a perfect mimic.?canton ohio stark county 2016 sept 7

  40. Ginger says:

    I found one in my bathroom . I live in Pennsylvania near Erie Pa

  41. Todd says:

    Finding lots of these in Toronto Canada.

  42. Renee Englert says:

    I’m finding them all over my house. My friends say they saw them too, about 100 of them at once in the common hallway of their apartment complex. We are in Canandaigua, NY. (Finger Lakes Region)

  43. Jeremy says:

    Live in Portage county (NE Ohio) and I’ve seen an incredible amount in and around my property lately. Thought at first it was a type of carpenter ant from what I saw online, until I saw them hanging from webs! Odd to see such an influx out of the blue.

  44. Daniele says:

    found one in my bathroom in austin texas … Are they.. can they. Hurt u ofthey bite u

  45. Jenn says:

    All over my house this last summer and currently- thought it was a weird ant until I found this! Outside of Rochester, NY

  46. Ashlee says:

    I live in Walton county Florida and we just spotted one of these guys on our porch very cool! Mistook him for an ant until he dropped from underneath a lamp onto the table from a web! He is as curious about us as we r about him lol!

  47. anthony amabile says:

    I’ve noticed these for at least the last five years in New Castle, PA (Western Pennsylvania)

  48. Madeeha says:

    I see these on my patio daily. The way I can tell it’s not an ant is it has almost a dark amber/red color if the sun hits it just right. Unlike ants. Plus they seem way smarter than ants and can tell when you are near. I have not seen them in groups of any kind, just around the patio and patio table. In Buffalo ny

  49. regina says:

    I live in Vermont and Never before have I seen them until this week …. I’ve seen 2 already in my kitchen. I thought it was an ant except it was hanging by its web/thread thingy. looks just like that photo. Could they be.migrating to the northeast?

    • bugman says:

      Since this is not a native species, once it is established in a new location, they are able to spread. We also believe they can hitch rides with tourists and visiting relatives, and they are able to increase range expansion through human travel patterns.

  50. Brianda says:

    I live in Ct. The last couple weeks I’ve been finding ant mimic spiders all over the place in my home. These ones are strange, though. They have teeny tiny white stripes that are barely noticeable on their black bodies. They dont jump either. But the body type resembles a carpenter ant! My concern, and the only reason that I think about them so much is that I most often find them on my pillow near my face, and that they seem to go out of their way to approach me. I’m by no means afraid of spiders, but for obvious reasons this is a little freaky. Im finding between 2 and 4 of these things a day, each time right next to me. Please tell me whats going on!

  51. Nagabhushan says:

    I live in Bengaluru, India. I have been seeing Ant-mimic Spiders since 2 years in my garden. I have clicked photos of at least 6 different sizes and shapes of these bugs. They hunt mosquitoes, flies, ants, and other tiny spiders. Like all other spiders they use ‘silk’ to hang from and weave their webs. They usually foray around an ant nest. But I am yet to seem ‘ their’ nest. Like the others they may also be lone fighters.
    I see a lot of people expressing concern or surprise for their ‘sudden’ increase in number, ‘invasion’ or ‘migration’. I remember S. Hawking scaring us about ‘Aliens are coming’. So let us find out the source and try to build a ‘wall’- a tall and transparent wall at that at their cost! LOL

  52. Judy says:

    Have them in my house in ashtabula county. Plenty of them. They just showed up last week and had them last summer too.

  53. Ashley says:

    Just found one inside here in Massachusetts. Freaky looking and fast! Thanks for all the info about it on here.

  54. Andrew says:

    I have recently found one in upstate New York in my home by my toilet, I was just wondering what it was and stumbled across this page thanks

  55. Catherine says:

    I just found one in my bathroom in Welland Ontario

  56. Sharon Sherk says:

    Saw two ant mimic jumping spider in my home Sept.12 2017 in Southern Ontario Canada near Lake Erie.Caught one didn’t know where to take so looked for website and found picture matching my spider.

  57. Mai says:

    Just found one hanging from the a/c vent in my kitchen (NE Ohio)! I thought I must be seeing things because it looked like it was hanging from a silk thread…but appeared to be an ant. SO glad I happened upon this posting! Thx for the info.

  58. Nichole Norton says:

    I have seen 2 of these in 24 hours. One at the nursing home where I work, hanging from the ceiling. The second was in my home, hanging from a doorway. Both Western PA

  59. Sleeping in another room says:

    Found one! Curious as they are, I prefer my spiders with some spacious bedmanners.
    Glad they only bite! Thanks for the helpful site!
    -muggy summer ontario

  60. Gary Bradford says:

    Saw one today in Highland county, OH. Pretty sure it was all black tho. Looked like an ant walking backwards, and had large mandibles, but was definitely a spider….

  61. brenda hopkind says:

    ok..spider ants r in my home..im in washington state..ive been bit over and over by some unknown bug..turning into severe rashes and has made me and my cat sick. is this spider ant able to bite humans and cats? please let me know..i have caught three…one i tried to kill n it kept movin n groovin for over 3 hours.

  62. Abby says:

    Think we have found 3 of these in our house over the last 2 days. I knew it was a spider. My bf thought it was some kind of an ant. We live in Los Alamos, NM.

  63. Bhushan says:

    Regular ants seem to be sparse now a days. This may be attributed to moisture and low tempr as it is raining for the last few weeks.
    But i suspect that the ant mimic-spiders which have come in different shapes and sizes, for the last 2 years, have devoured all our ants.
    Are ants an endangered species?

  64. Sam says:

    Finding them all over near Alden, NY . First year finding them.

  65. Abigail says:

    They are onvding my office in Stark County, OH. My co worker has crushed 5 or 6 and I have 2. Help! I don’t want to bring these home on me and I especially don’t want them biting my baby!

  66. Lori says:

    I’m in buffalo new York, and for the last couple weeks I’ve been noticing a lot of “ants” crawling around here.. well, what I thought were ants. I went to bend over to pet my dog this morning and noticed an “ant” hanging from a web off of my shirt! I kinda flipped, one because I realized this thing wasn’t an ant since it had a web and second because it had been on my my body . I’ve never noticed these things before and we’ve never had an insect or spider problem, but now I’m starting to get concerned… we have a baby coming in the next month.

  67. Cheryl Livolsi says:

    I’m finding these bugs in my bathroom I didn’t know what they were so I looked up, “cross between a spider and an ant” and came across your site. I’m terrified of spiders I’d rather it be an ant! Is there an effective remedy such as an insecticide of some sort that I can use that will not harm my cat ? I live in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania

  68. A.D. says:

    Just leaving a note that I think I found one in a bathroom in South Euclid OH yesterday. There was an “ant” in my bathroom sink not really running around like an ant, but attracted to water like some of the larger ants. When I tried to capture in some toilet tissue, it took three tries, so I had to smooosh it badly. It’s carcass def did not seem ant-like. It was red with blood….which might explain the number of bites on exposed feet, elbows, and calves that ITCH like you wouldn’t believe….

  69. Lori says:

    I found another one of these had made a web between my microwave and countertop. It crawled off the web and walked towards the sink, I watched as it headed towards where the water was and once it saw me it stopped, and waited.. they’re creepily sentient, like it knew i was coming for it. Does anyone know if they do indeed bite?

  70. Dee says:

    Tidewater Va. here. Have seen two in the last week. They were different enough of an insect for me to note that I had never seen one before. The hubby happened to be around when I spotted second one and told me what it was (ant mimicking spider) although he said nothing about jumping!

  71. Daniel says:

    Reporting in from the town of Newfane in Niagara County, NY.
    Over the last week I’ve had two definite and one possible sighting in our house. One was in the kitchen and the other two in the breezeway between garage and kitchen.

  72. A says:

    Just smooshed one on my kitchen floor, seemed like it was running right towards me!
    Prescott AZ

  73. Trisha says:

    Just saw one on my office wall in Troy Michigan. Looked up spiders that look like ants and found this site. Couldn’t get him to jump though.

  74. Sarah says:

    Ive seen 3 or 4 over the past 2 years, in the bathroom and outside, about 30 minutes SE of Waco, Tx

  75. Jennifer H says:

    I just found one in my living room. I live in Pittsburgh PA.

  76. Adam says:

    I would have thought this little guy was a Texas fire ant, a very common sight here in Dallas–had he not been dangling above my desk at work a few minutes ago. Still, I was perplexed. He began to ascend the strand, and I was pretty sure it was a spider in disguise.

    Halloween was last week, buddy.

  77. Chris Enbysk says:

    Just caught one Sacramento, ca.got really good pics too.thanks to u I now know what it is .wow interesting spider

  78. Margaret H says:

    Think I saw my first ones last summer, but this year they are everywhere! The first ones I saw this spring were in an open garden area, and there were quite a few so I passed them off as ants, since they were running across the ground just like ants. But the black-reddish-black coloring and the weird-shaped ‘head’ threw me off when I looked closer. So I went through books & online to find out what kind of ants they were, and eventually found a cross reference to the ant mimic.
    They are everywhere now. Most I have seen are on open soil, but also the kitchen table, in the bathroom, and the floor of the house. I finally saw my first one hanging from a thread, in the bathroom, which finally made it appear more like a spider than an ant. I live in western Geauga County in Ohio. I never saw these before last summer, and now they are everywhere!

  79. Ana Hubbard says:

    I’ve found 3 of these in the last 2-3 weeks in my home in western NY (between Rochester and Buffalo). Twice they dropped down in front of me from the ceiling on their web while I was working (once in the kitchen and once at my desk in the office). I was confused as it looked like an ant but it definitely had a web. Tonight, I found one clinging to a piece of lettuce in my bagged salad, again with a definite web. First time I’ve ever come across these.

  80. Ross Loizzo says:

    Toronto Canada here. I have an image of one last year and have seen one last week. Cold doeskin affect them.

  81. woncia says:

    I’m in Montreal in Quebec, Canada. In the past 24 hours I’ve seen and eliminated 3 of them in my bedroom. The last one was on the carpet and I saw it jump.
    They freak me out, they look like ants on steroids.
    Battling recurring bedbug infestations and now this… and why in my bedroom?

  82. Jacob says:

    I have seen about 4 or 5 within the last week in Ontario. Not fun.

  83. Karen says:

    I just found one inside my house in Southern Ontario.
    Was crawling across the wall and I was worried it was an ant. As I got closer to take a look it stopped and reared back and extended two legs (antanne?).
    Looks the same as pics.
    Have never seen this species here not that I would have noticed anyways.

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