WILDLIFE PHOTOGRAPHY – ENCHANTED FOREST PARK, FL
This is a photo of a Jumping Spider taken at Enchanted Forest Park in North Miami, Florida using a Nikon D90 camera body attached to a Nikkor 60mm 2.8 lens and a macro light ring.
The jumping spider family (Salticidae) contains more than 500 described genera and about 5,000 described species, making it the largest family of spiders with about 13% of all species. Jumping spiders have good vision and use it for hunting and navigating. They are capable of jumping from place to place, secured by a silk tether. Both their book lungs and the tracheal system are well-developed, as they depend on both systems (bimodal breathing).
Jumping spiders live in a variety of habitats. Tropical forests harbor the most species, but they are also found in temperate forests, scrub lands, deserts, intertidal zones, and even mountains. Jumping spiders are generally recognized by their eye pattern. All jumping spiders have four pairs of eyes with very large anterior median eyes. Jumping spiders are generally diurnal, active hunters. Their well-developed internal hydraulic system extends their limbs by altering the pressure of body fluid (hemolymph) within them. This enables the spiders to jump without having large muscular legs like a grasshopper. Most jumping spiders can jump several times the length of their body. When a jumping spider is moving from place to place, and especially just before it jumps, it tethers a filament of silk (or dragline) to whatever it is standing on. Should it fall for one reason or another, it climbs back up the silk tether.
Jumping spiders are active hunters, which means that they do not rely on a web to catch their prey. Instead, these spiders stalk their prey. They use their superior eyesight to distinguish and track their intended meals, often for several inches. Then they pounce, giving the insect little to no time to react before succumbing to the spider’s venom.. They are capable of learning, recognizing, and remembering colors.