Currently viewing the category: "Nursery Web Spiders"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

I think I’ve identified it on my own!
Thanks for your help!
x Danielle

Hi Danielle,
We are wondering what you think you have here. This is definitely a Dolomedes Fishing Spider. The silvery white line around the cephalothorax is a good indication this is Dolomedes triton, but the spots on the abdomen seem to be missing. That is still our best guess at a species identification as it doesn’t resemble any other Dolomedes.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

spider/ brown anole carnage
Dear bugman-
We saw this spider kill a brown anole in a swamp in Big Cypress National Preserve. It was about 4- 4 1/2″ in diameter. We couldn’t figure out exactly what species it was, we were hoping you could help. These spiders are all over this part of the preserve, would they ever bother humans? We also just thought it was a cool picture for your website, we hope you use it. Thanks bugman.
Lisa and Jimi

Hi Lisa and Jimi,
Awesome photo of one of the Dolomedes Fishing Spiders. They walk on water and dive below the surface to catch fish as well as catching lizards on trees.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

fishing spider ?
Hi,
Just logged onto your neat site. I think I have a fishing spider here, but not sure what it’s carrying. Can you help me out.
Thank you, Al Chartier

Hi Al
Fishing Spiders in the genus Dolomedes belong to the larger Family Pisauridae, the Nursery-Web Weavers. The female spiders, according to Comstock: “From the time the egg-sac is made until the spiderlings are ready to emerge, the mother carries about with her, wherever she goes, this great silken ball with its load of eggs or of young. the difficulty of doing this can be seen by a glance at … [your photos]. The egg-sac is held under the body; and is so large thaqt the mother is forced to run on the tips of her tarsi in order to hold the load clear of obstructions. … Just before the young are ready to emerge from the egg-sac, or just after they begin to do so, the mother fastens it among leaves at the top of some herbaceous plant or at th end of a branch of a shrub, and builds a nursery about it by fastening the leaves together with a network of threaeds. She then remains on the outside of the nursery guarding the young.” Thank you for your wonderful contribution to our site.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Dear Bugman,
I attached a picture of a spider I found while cleaning a pond in my backyard in southwest Louisiana. I thought it was one of the most beautiful spiders I’d ever seen- kind of a mossy green with blue spots on its abdomen. I did some research and I’m pretty sure it’s a diving spider because I watched it go under a couple of times. At one point I think it even attacked a fish. Do you know the specific name for it and any more info?
Thanks,
Fran

Hi Fran,
We are very excited by your letter and photo since the Six Spotted Fishing Spider is a new species for our site. Dolomedes triton is a beautiful spider and not easily confused with any other. It is greenish brown with silvery white lengthwise stripes along each side of the body. Abdomen has two rows of six white spots. It is found in slow moving streams and ponds. They eat small insects, tadpoles and fish. They are often found on water vegetation. According to Comstock: “This beautiful species is common in marshy places. It lives on plants over water, and dives freely when frightened, hiding under floating leaves. It is widely distributed, found in the east from New England to Texas, and is also known from across the northern part of the country in some of our western states and in Canada.”

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Can you identify this for me…?
I’m curious about this spider. Is it a fishing spider. It was on the side of the dock early in the a.m. at Little Lake St. Joseph in Muskoka Ontario. Interesting site! Have it bookmarked now
Thanks
Theresa Durning

Hi Theresa,
Your spider is indeed a Fishing Spider, one of the Dolomedes species. It does illustrate an interesting aspect of spider physiology since it has regrown two legs. According to Comstock: “The Reproduction of Lost Organs.– The reproducing of legs that have been lost by immature spiders is frequently observed. If a leg be lost by a young spider the wound soon heals, and at the succeeding mount the bud of a new leg appears. This bud increases in size at each succeeding moult; and in time, if the process begins early enough in the life of the spider, a functional leg is obtained.” In your image, the two middle legs on the left (the spider’s right) have regenerated. Your photograph is a very interesting addition to our site.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

scary spider
Hello, I’ve been looking on the web for about an hour now trying to identify this spider that I found today in a wooded area in Maryland. It’s size(3 to 3 1/2 inches or so sprawled out) and menacing appearance scared me today when I turned over a board. Can you please identify this for me? When I tried to scare it off of the board ( I didn’t want to squash it), it released a white substance out of its rear at me.
Thanks for your help,
Sid

Hi Sid,
Your photograph of a Fishing Spider from the genus Dolomedes is pretty great. These awesome spiders are actually capable of walking on water and then diving below the surface where they can remain more than 30 minutes. Sometimes they even catch small fish, hence the common name. They are also called Nursery Web Spiders because of the maternal behavior the females exhibit. Though large, they are not dangerous to humans. Your species is most probably Dolomedes tenebrosus or Dark Dolomedes. It is one of the largest species.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination