Currently viewing the category: "Trechaleidae"

Subject:  Details on this scary spider!
Geographic location of the bug:  Sabino Canyon seasonal pool
Date: 11/04/2017
Time: 01:36 AM EDT
I found this spider FISHING for chub in Sabino Canyon, in a seasonal pool. Date – October 30, 2017 at about 3:00 in the afternoon. Outside air temp was warm, about 88 degrees. At first I thought the spider was trapped on the water, but no, it was clearly able to move on top of and stay above the water. It would dip it’s mandibles in and tap-tap-tap the water, I suspect to draw the fish, and it did bring them close. Either that or it’s size, about half the size of my adult male hand, so it cast a shadow. Any details would be appreciated!
How you want your letter signed:  Rob Bremmer

Long Legged Fishing Spider

Dear Rob,
We have a very old posting in our archives of the Long Legged Fishing Spider,
Trechalea gertschi from the family Trechaleidae that was also sighted in Sabino Canyon, and we believe that is also the species to which your individual belongs.  Since the time the images were submitted to our site, there have been additional postings to BugGuide.  We are curious about your definition of a “seasonal pool” because we don’t know of any fish other than some Killifish that lay eggs in the mud of ponds that dry out, the eggs hatching with the next rainy season.

​Hi Daniel,
By seasonal, I mean that it is part of flowing and running water when wet season allows, and isolated shrinking warm pools as heat of summer evaporates the water. I heard from the rangers that they re-stocked the chub fish because they had died out, and now, apparently, they are able to make it through a full rainy / dry season.​
Thanks for the clarification Rob.
Have you ever seen a photo of a spider fishing like that? It’s a first for me and I’m thrilled to have caught it! Wish I could have lingered all day to see how it played out but the sun was past noon and we still had to hike out.
Rob Bremmer
Yes we have.  We sent you a link to a Long Legged Fishing Spider from our archives.  That predates any postings for the species on BugGuide.  Your submission is our second documentation of this interesting Long Legged Fishing Spider that resembles a Flattie more than it does a traditional Fishing Spider in the genus Dolomedes.


Subject: Honduras- Spider
Location: El Ocote, Honduras
November 19, 2014 7:35 pm
HI, I visited the forests of Honduras and came across this beautiful spider! The body was easily the size of my palm, and its legs longer than my fingers!!! It was on a rock, that was in the middle of a creek. This was in easternHonduras, in the forests outside the small community of El Ocote.
The back part of the body had mostly black, but was fat and round. The legs were banded with black and brown stripes.
This beauty was easily larger than my hand when we took the legs into account. No web that I could see.
Sadly I asked our military escort to grab this pic and we couldn’t get much closer due to the creek and safety reasons…. when i asked him what type this was, all he said was spider in Spanish.
Signature: Curious Traveler

Unknown Spider

Long Legged Fishing Spider

Dear Curious Traveler,
Your image is too blurry for an identification.

Can you identify this Spider?
or if not,any educated guesses?
A better description is as follows:
Long thin legs with alternating black and brown bands, each leg aprox  6 inches long.
Abdomen/body aprox 4 inches long.
Fangs were aprox half an inch.
The  main body was just a  plain brown and then the back part of the body was all brown with no markings then it faded to black, no markings again.
Location: found on a rock in the middle of a creek  in the woods about 45 mins outside the village of El Ocote in eastern Honduras. NO web nearby.
Time: middle of afternoon aprox 12noon, on august 25th 2014.

We will post your blurry image and give our readership a chance at identification.

Update:  Long Legged Fishing Spider
Thanks to a comment from Cesar Crash who runs our sister site Insetologia out of Brazil, we believe this is a Long Legged Fishing Spider in the family Trechaleidae.  Both the shape of the spider and the behavior that is described in the submission fit for this family.

Oh wow thank you! I’m sorry I could not get a better picture but it is nice to get an idea 🙂
Looking up pics online and it does look a lot like the spider. The body in the back is slightly off, but  I think that may have been it! Thank you!

Update from Karl:  December 17, 2014
Hi Daniel and Curious Traveler:
Regarding the poster’s comment that the “body in the back is slightly off”, it’s because his/her photo is of a female carrying an egg sac. Trechaleid spiders produce a rather distinctive flat, disc-shaped and camouflaged egg sac that the females carry around attached to the underside of her abdomen. Regards.  Karl

Thanks Karl,
If Curious Traveler had taken an image with the high quality of the link you provided, it would have made identification considerably easier.

strange spider in Sabino Canyon near Tucson
Hello Bugman!
I found this strange spider in the Sabino Canyon near Tucson. It was June, nearly 110°, and the water ponds in the canyon bottom were decreasing at a high pace. Around one of the ponds some of these spiders were sitting and some had amphibia larvae in their fangs. Strange, they rather looked like giant crab spiders; the one on the photo also moved like a crab. Do you have any idea what that might be? Thanks a lot!
Greetings from Daniel Jestrzemski (who really enjoyed his time in the US Southwest)

Hi Daniel,
This looked like one of the Dolomedes Fishing spiders, but leaner. The behavior you describe, including eating tadpoles, fits. We weren’t sure Fishing Spiders were found in Arizona. Then we located an image of Dolomedes gertschi. It looks identical to your spider and it was photographed in Arizona. Another posted image of Dolomedes gertschi looks quite different. It appears this species was first described in 1973.

Correction from Mandy Howe:  Trechalea gertschi
April 1, 2013
Hi Daniel (x2),

My name is Mandy, and I’ve talked to you guys once before (back in April 2012) about getting a link added to the “bug links” section, so that’s how I have both of your email addresses. 🙂

I came across a post at What’s That Bug that has an image of a spider that is not very commonly photographed and has a very restricted distribution, and I’d like to contact the photographer and see if they’d be willing to submit the images to  Are you guys allowed to give out their contact info?

The post is actually misidentified on your site (it’s family Trechaleidae, Trechalea gertschi) but it’s the one at this link: 2008/01/18/fishing-spider-from-arizona-dolomedes-gertschi-perhaps/.

Thanks for any help contacting Daniel!  (Whoa, another Daniel!) I know you guys are super busy, so don’t feel bad if there’s nothing you can do. I just figured it’s worth a shot to ask.

Mandy Howe
editor at
staff at
reviewer at
spider consultant for

P.S. I occasionally see some other spiders in passing that had an incorrect ID (e.g. the same page that originally brought the Trechalea to my attention actually had a Hogna baltimoriana wolf spider on it that was ID’d as a Dolomedes fishing spider).  I know you guys can ID practically everything under the sun, so I don’t mean that as a criticism (I love your site and the work you do to enlighten the masses), I just wanted to say that if you need any extra eyes on spider submissions in the future, feel free to contact me.  I’d be happy to help on the tough/iffy IDs, and am really passionate about the subject.  …

Hi Mandy,
Wow, this is an old posting.  We don’t really hold onto email addresses, but I will see if I can locate the contact information you requested.  Please provide a comment on the Wolf Spider incorrectly identified as a Fishing Spider so that I can make a correction.

Trechalea gertschi

Trechalea gertschi

Ed. Note:  April 10, 2013
Since we were searching our archives on another computer for the original digital files of these images, we thought we could post higher resolution photos as well, but alas, the original files are quite small.

Trechalea gertschi

Trechalea gertschi