Glamerous and glittery spiders

Today I’ve been busy writing up a manuscript on a very special spider that I worked on in Singapore, called¬†Orsima ichneumon.¬†It’s early days to report our findings yet, but in the meantime I couldn’t help but share a couple of these beautiful images that my husband (Caleb Nicholson) took during some sessions in the lab.

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A very plump (gravid) female showing off her splendid colours

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A typical male with a much slimmer and constricted abdomen, brighter colours, and very long forelegs

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Males perform courtship displays to females, including showing off their brightly coloured abdomen by bending it upwards to face her

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A mating pair – after a series of complex courtship maneuvers, the male spider (right) inserts his pedipalp into the female’s genital opening (epigynum) to transfer sperm

 

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Two males, front legs outstretched, about to lock jaws in battle

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Juveniles have translucent legs and a cute orange mask

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The photographer being a great field assistant, watching spiders near Gombak Field Station in Malaysia

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Even roadside collecting for these spiders in Malaysia is pretty special, here we could hear gibbons calling in the valley

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Checking out the umbrella “beat sheet” for Orsima spiders on the roadside