Monday, 7 July 2008

Tempting Fate

Blame it on my eyes, but the smaller arachnid does not look like the male of this particular Desidae species!

I watched this little battle for over an hour this morning. The Black House spider was out of her comfort zone and away from her web.

(Click to enlarge)

The smaller spider was persistent. It did resemble mating behaviour, but the male of Badumna insignis is supposed to be similar in colour to the female but slightly lighter, so what exactly was going on here?

It came down to the female numerous times and stroked her head and front legs. She tried to lunge but had little traction on the aluminium door frame. The small spider would retreat up the thread and when well out of reach, turn around and repeat the process all over again!

Whatever it was going on between these two, it was certainly interesting to watch.

UPDATE: I sent myself off to do a little research and it's possible the small arachnid is Achaearanea sp. Same family (Theridiidae) as the Redback. If that's the case then this encounter may have more to do with a territorial dispute than anything else.


Mosura said...

Interesting series of photos. If the little one is not the male then it is certainly brave.

Junior Lepid said...

Brave it certainly was, mosura. The last time I saw it, it had retreated to a safer place!

Duncan said...

Great stuff JL, well spotted, well photographed.

Junior Lepid said...

Thanks Duncan.

It was interesting to watch. i've also learnt that the Black House Spider will clean up Redbacks, so if I'm right with my ID, that little guy was exceedingly courageous!