By: Michael Fox

Spider web - 29 March 2014

Wolf Spider web

I think I have solved the puzzle of the strange muslin like spider webs on the ground last week.

Julie-Anne suggested wolf spiders so I have been searching for these fearsome hunters among the leaf litter.

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Dark Wolf Spider - 31 March 2014

Dark Wolf Spider

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I found this this Dark Wolf Spider Lycosa obscuroides morning. These spiders look fearsome but they are small with a body length of approximately 10mm so they would fit the hole in the web I photographed.

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Dark Wolf Spider - front - 31 March 2014

Fearsome features – eight eyes

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Wolf spiders hunt among the leaf litter for crickets and lizards. They have also been reported as feeding on Cane Toads. I assume it is the larger species that hunt Cane Toads however it is certainly nice to think some Australian species are fighting back.

Wolf spiders have a distinctive pattern of eight eyes with one row of four small eyes at the front with two large eyes above and another two large mounted on the side of its head.

lycosa - with egg sac - Sept08

Female Dark Wolf Spider with egg sac

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Another interesting characteristic of wolf spiders is the females carrying their egg sac with them. Once the eggs hatch she carries her young on her back. I photographed this female in 2008 and I had forgotten how small these fearsome creatures are.

 

 

 

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