Deinopis sp

Meaning of name: Deinopis is from the Greek words deinos, meaning fearful, and opis, meaning appearance.

Distribution: Unknown.

Description: This spider has a body length of approximately 25 millimetres.

Notes: Deinopis sp are net-casting spiders. The net which Deinopis makes is specially constructed so that it can be stretched. The spider hangs face-down over some place that some insects might walk, and it holds the net ready with its front legs. It then patiently waits for a critter to walk underneath it.

Once something wanders within range the whole net-cast-catch thing is over in less than a second. It lunges over the critter and wraps the sticky net over it. The prey is quickly overwhelmed.

We have seen this spider in January, June and December.

References: Identification courtesy of Kim Pullen, CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deinopis

http://www.mdavid.com.au/spiders/netcasters.shtml

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