Insects

Insects

Spiders

Top Ten Spiders

Top Ten Spiders
File:Ant Mimic Spider.jpgFile:Phidippus audax male.jpgFile:Tarantula 020.jpgFile:Adult Female Black Widow.jpg

  1. The Brazilian Wandering Spider
    The Brazilian Wandering SpiderThe Brazilian Wandering Spider1The Brazilian Wandering Spider2
            This spider is believed to have the most potent neurotoxic venom of any living spider. Only 0.006 mg (0.00000021oz) is sufficient to kill a mouse. They are also so dangerous because of their wandering nature. They often hide during daytime in highly populated areas inside houses, clothes, boots and cars. Its venomous bite causes not only intense pain, the venom of the spider can also cause priapism, uncomfortable erections lasting for many hours that lead to impotence.
    Links: Top Ten Brazilian Attractions, Top Ten Most Poisonous Animals,
  2. Sydney Funnel Web
    Sydney Funnel WebFile:Agelenidae labyrinthica.JPG
           Atracinae, commonly known as Australian funnel-web spiders, is a subfamily of spiders in the funnel-web spider family Hexathelidae. Atracinae consists of three genera: Atrax, Hadronyche, and Illawarra. The subfamily includes species with medically significant venom, the most well-known of which is the Sydney funnel-web spider (Atrax robustus). The bite of Atrax robustus is potentially deadly, but there have been no fatalities since the introduction of modern first aid techniques and antivenom.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sydney_funnelweb,
  3. Tarantula
    File:Wiki tarantula.jpgFile:Tarantula 020.jpgFile:Lasiodora parahybana, eyes.JPGFile:Brachypelma smithi, urticating hairs.JPGFile:Lasiodora parahybana 2009 G03.jpgFile:GBB.jpg
    Tarantulas (as the term is used in North America) comprise a group of often hairy and very large arachnids belonging to the family Theraphosidae, of which approximately 900 species have been identified. Some genera of tarantulas hunt prey primarily in trees; others hunt on or near the ground. All tarantulas can produce silk—while arboreal species will typically reside in a silken “tube tent”, terrestrial species will line their burrows with silk to stabilize the burrow wall and facilitate climbing up and down. Tarantulas mainly eat insects and other arthropods, using ambush as their primary method of prey capture. The biggest tarantulas can kill animals as large as lizards, mice, birds and small snakes. They can be found in the south and western parts of the US, Central America and throughout South America. Tarantulas can also be found throughout Africa, large parts of Asia and all over Australia. In Europe, there are some species in Spain, Portugal, Turkey, Italy, and in Cyprus. Most tarantulas are harmless to humans, and some species are popular in the exotic pet trade. All tarantulas are venomous, but only some species have venom that, while not known to have ever produced human fatalities, can produce extreme discomfort over a period of several days. Like all arthropods, the tarantula is an invertebrate that relies on an exoskeleton for muscular support. A tarantula’s body consists of two main parts, the prosoma (cephalothorax) and the opisthosoma (abdomen). The prosoma and opisthosoma are connected by the pedicle, or what is often called the pregenital somite. The sizes range from as small as a fingernail to as big as a dinner plate. Depending on the species, the body length of tarantulas ranges from 2.5 to 10 cm (1 to 4 in), with 8–30 cm (3–12 in) leg spans. Leg span is determined by measuring from the tip of the back leg to the tip of the front leg on the opposite side. The largest species of tarantula can weigh over 85 grams (3 oz). The largest of all, the goliath birdeater (Theraphosa blondi) from Venezuela and Brazil, has been reported to have a weight of 150 grams (5.3 oz) and a leg-span of up to 30 cm (12 in), males being the longer and females greater in girth. T. apophysis (the pinkfoot goliath) was described 187 years after the goliath birdeater; therefore its characteristics are not as well attested.T. blondi is generally thought to be the heaviest tarantula, and T. apophysis to have the greatest leg span. Two other species, Lasiodora parahybana (the Brazilian salmon birdeater) and L. klugi, rival the size of the two goliath spiders. The majority of North American tarantulas are brown. Elsewhere have been found species colored cobalt blue (Haplopelma lividum), black with white stripes (Aphonopelma seemanni), yellow leg markings (Eupalaestrus campestratus), metallic blue legs with vibrant orange abdomen and greenbottle blue (Chromatopelma cyaneopubescens). Their natural habitats include savanna, grasslands such as the pampas, rainforests, deserts, scrubland, mountains, and cloud forests. They are generally classed among the terrestrial types. They are burrowers that live in the ground. Tarantulas are becoming increasingly popular as pets and are readily available in captivity.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tarantula,
  4. Black Widow
    File:LatrodectusHesperus 1069.JPGFile:Black Widow 11-06.jpgFile:Black Widow making web.jpegFile:Latrodectus mactans eating.JPGFile:Adult Female Black Widow.jpg
           Black widow is a common name of some spiders in the genus Latrodectus listed below, who are reputed to kill male spiders after mating.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_widow,
  5. Gasteracantha Cancriformis

    Gasteracantha cancriformis (the star spider, spiny-backed orbweaver, crab-like spiny orbweaver spider, jewel box spider or smiley face spider) is a species of spider found in the southern part of the US from California to Florida, as well as in Central America, Jamaica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Bermuda, South America and certain islands in the Bahamas. Females are 5–9 mm (0.20–0.35 in) long and 10–13 mm (0.39–0.51 in) wide. The carapace, legs and underside are black with white spots under the abdomen, with color variations including white or yellow color with both featuring black spots. A white upperside can have either red or black spines while a yellow upperside can only have black ones. Like in many other spiders, males are much smaller (2 to 3 mm long) and longer than wide. They are similar to the females in color but have a gray abdomen with white spots and the spines are reduced to four or five stubby projections. This species of spider does not live very long. In fact, the lifespan only lasts until reproduction, which usually takes place the spring following the winter when they hatched. Females die after producing an egg mass, and males die six days after a complete cycle of sperm induction to the female.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gasteracantha_cancriformis,
  6. Portia
    File:Portia.fimbriata.female.in.its.web.-.tanikawa.jpgFile:Portia.fimbriata.female.-.tanikawa.jpg
           Portia is a genus of jumping spider which feeds on other spiders (araneophagic). They are remarkable for their intelligent hunting behavior which suggests they are capable of learning and problem solving, traits normally attributed to much larger animals.
    Links: Top Ten Most Intelligent Animalshttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Portia_(spider),
  7. Trapdoor Spiders
    File:Ummidia sp.jpg
           Trapdoor spiders (superfamily Ctenizoidea, family Ctenizidae) are medium-sized mygalomorph spiders that construct burrows with a cork-like trapdoor made of soil, vegetation and silk. Some similar species are also called trapdoor spiders, such as the Liphistiidae, Barychelidae, Cyrtaucheniidae and some Idiopidae and Nemesiidae. Some Conothele species do not build a burrow, but construct a silken tube with trapdoor in bark crevices.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trapdoor_spider,
  8. Jumping Spider
    File:Phidippus audax male.jpgFile:Salticidae sp. AF 2.jpgFile:Jumping Spider.jpg
    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 some of the best vision among invertebrates and use it in courtship, hunting, and navigation. Though they normally move quietly and fairly slowly, most species are capable of very agile jumps, notably when hunting, but sometimes in response to sudden threats. Both their book lungs and the tracheal system are well-developed, and they use both systems (bimodal breathing). Jumping spiders are generally recognized by their eye pattern. All jumping spiders have four pairs of eyes with particularly large anterior median eyes.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jumping_spider,
  9. Orb Weaver Spider
    File:Orb weaver black bckgrnd03 crop.jpgFile:Eriophora sp 2.jpgFile:Argiope sp.jpgFile:Grass cross spider (Argiope catenulata)- Female W2 IMG 2741.jpgFile:Eriophora transmarina.jpgFile:Leucauge venusta Kaldari 01.jpgFile:NephilaClavata-2005Kurihara.jpg
           The “typical” orb-weaver spiders (family Araneidae) are the most common group of builders of spiral wheel-shaped webs often found in gardens, fields and forests. Their common name is taken from the round shape of this typical web, and the taxon was formerly also referred to as the Orbiculariae. Orb-weavers have eight similar eyes, legs hairy or spiny and no stridulating organs. The Araneidae family is cosmopolitan, including many well-known large or brightly colored garden spiders. There are 3,006 species in 168 genera worldwide, making Araneidae the third largest family of spiders known (behind Salticidae and Linyphiidae). The orb-weavers include over 10,000 species and make up about 25% of spider diversity. However, orb-webs are also produced by members of other families. The large “golden” orb-weavers (Nephilidae) and the long-jawed orb weavers (Tetragnathidae) were formerly included in the Araneidae; they are indeed closely related to them, being part of superfamily Araneoidea. Their webs are similar to those of the typical orb-weavers, but tend to be less sophisticated and often have an irregular instead of a neat spiral arrangement of the prey-capturing threads. The cribellate or hackled orb-weavers (Uloboridae) belong to a distinct superfamily of the suborder Araneomorphae; their webs are often very sophisticated but Uloboridae use neither poison to kill their prey, nor sticky threads in their web, and probably evolved the orb structure independently. Uloboridae are cribellate, and their threads can be recognized by the fuzzy and dull appearance, which captures prey by a velcro-like mechanism. Even among the Araneoidea, the orb-webs may have evolved at least twice from the three-dimensional webs most common in this superfamily, as typically produced e.g. by tangle-web spiders (Theridiidae).
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orb-web_spider,
  10. Ant Mimicking Spider
    File:Ant Mimic Spider.jpgFile:Myrmarachne-plataleoides.jpg
    Myrmarachne is a genus of jumping spiders which imitate an ant by waving their front legs in the air to simulate antennae. Some species also look strikingly like ants. Spiders in this genus are commonly called antmimicking spiders, although there are many other spiders that mimic ants.
    Links: Top Ten Ants, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Myrmarachne,
  11. Wolf Spider
    File:CarolinaWolfSpider 02.jpgFile:Wolf eyes for guide.jpgFile:Lycosidae female carrying young.jpgFile:Wolf spider&egg sac.jpgFile:Wolf spider attack position.jpgFile:Wolfspinne1.jpg
          Wolf spiders are members of the family Lycosidae, from the Ancient Greek word “λύκος” meaning “wolf”. They are robust and agile hunters with excellent eyesight. They live mostly solitary lives and hunt alone. Some are opportunistic hunters pouncing upon prey as they find it or even chasing it over short distances. Some will wait for passing prey in or near the mouth of a burrow. Wolf spiders resemble Nursery web spiders (family Pisauridae), but wolf spiders carry their egg sacs by attaching them to their spinnerets (Pisauridae carry their egg sacs with their chelicerae and pedipalps). Two of the Wolf spider’s eight eyes are large and prominent, which distinguishes them from the Nursery web spiders whose eyes are all of approximately equal size.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wolf_spider,
  12. Bonus: Trigonotarbida
    File:Palaeotarbus jerami.png
           The Order Trigonotarbida is an extinct group of arachnids whose fossil record extends from the late Silurian to the early Permian (c. 419 to 290 million years ago). These animals are known from several localities in Europe and North America, as well as a single record from Argentina. Trigonotarbids can be envisaged as spider-like arachnids, but without silk-producing spinnerets. They ranged in size from a few millimetres to a few centimetres in body length and had a segmented abdomen, with the tergites across the back of the animal’s abdomen characteristically divided into three or five separate plates. Probably living as predators on other arthropods, some later trigonotarbid species were quite heavily armoured and protected themselves with spines and tubercles. About seventy species are currently known, with most fossils originating from the Carboniferous Coal Measures.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trigonotarbid,
  13. Bonus: Spider Man
    Spider-Man.jpg
           Spider-Man is a fictional character, a comic book superhero who appears in comic books published by Marvel Comics. Created by writer-editor Stan Lee and writer-artist Steve Ditko, he first appeared in Amazing Fantasy #15 (August 1962). Lee and Ditko conceived the character as an orphan being raised by his Aunt May and Uncle Ben, and as a teenager, having to deal with the normal struggles of adolescence in addition to those of a costumed crimefighter. Spider-Man’s creators gave him super strength and agility, the ability to cling to most surfaces, shoot spider-webs using devices of his own invention which he called “web-shooters,” and react to danger quickly with his “spider-sense,” enabling him to combat his foes. When Spider-Man first appeared in the early 1960’s, teenagers in superhero comic books were usually relegated to the role of sidekick to the protagonist. The Spider-Man series broke ground by featuring Peter Parker, a teenage high school student and person behind Spider-Man’s secret identity to whose “self-obsessions with rejection, inadequacy, and loneliness” young readers could relate. Unlike previous teen heroes such as Bucky and Robin, Spider-Man did not benefit from being the protégé of any adult superhero mentors like Captain America and Batman, and thus had to learn for himself that “with great power there must also come great responsibility”—a line included in a text box in the final panel of the first Spider-Man story, but later retroactively attributed to his guardian, the late Uncle Ben. Marvel has featured Spider-Man in several comic book series, the first and longest-lasting of which is titled The Amazing Spider-Man. Over the years, the Peter Parker character has developed from shy, nerdy high school student to troubled but outgoing college student, to married high school teacher to, in the late 2000’s, a single freelance photographer, his most typical adult role. As of 2011, he is additionally a member of the Avengers and the Fantastic Four, Marvel’s flagship superhero teams. In the comics, Spider-Man is often referred to as “Spidey,” “web-slinger,” “wall-crawler,” or “web-head.” Spider-Man is one of the most popular and commercially successful superheroes. As Marvel’s flagship character and company mascot, he has appeared in many forms of media, including several animated and live-action television shows, syndicated newspaper comic strips, and a series of films starring Tobey Maguire as the “friendly neighborhood” hero in the first three movies. Spider-Man placed 3rd on IGN’s Top 100 Comic Book Heroes of All Time in 2011.
    Links: Top 100 Superheroeshttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spiderman,
  14. Links: Top 100 Animals, Top Ten Most Poisonous Animals, Top Ten Deadliest Animals,