Zebra Spider Salticus scenicus

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Family Salticidae

Description The black stripes make them easily recognisable; the female has a black abdomen with white stripes whereas the male has a brown abdomen with white stripes.

Female zebra spiders are slightly larger 5-7mm long and males are 5-6mm. The most distinctive feature of these spiders is their two very large eyes. Although they have 8 eyes, the two at the front are the largest and give them excellent binocular vision. These tiny spiders are black with white hairs that form stripes.

Zebra spiders belong to the family Salticidae (also known as jumping spiders) and have good vision

These Zebras use their large front eyes to locate and stalk their prey. They move slowly towards their prey until they are close enough to pounce on top of their victim, and their hunting behaviour has been described as cat-like. Using their acute eyesight, they are able to accurately judge the distances they need to jump. Before jumping they glue a silk thread to the surface that they are jumping from so that if miss the target they can climb up the thread and try again.

Similars Salticus cingulatus is similar but it usually has more white hairs giving it an overall paler look. S. zebraneus has fewer white hairs and appears darker

Possible with experience or close exam

Habitat walls and fences close to habitation.