Adult Males and Females
Male pedipalps usually enlarged, looking like boxing gloves.
Immatures (different stages)
Spiderlings are smaller than the adults, but basically look the same. Cloration of immature
spider may be different than adult
Spiders are predators that eat various other arthropods, usually smaller than themselves. Common prey include crickets, flies, bees, grasshoppers, moths and butterflies.
If a web builder, the nest is usually near where insects will fly, like near flowers or moist areas. Some web spinners build their nest on the ground to catch walking insects and arthropods. A retreat area may be just off the web in a crevice, rolled leaf, or twig. Species that burrow into soil may situate nests under a log, rock or in a crevice. The jumping spiders do not make webs, but actively hunt for prey.
Some wasps, other spiders, birds and lizards.
Spiders produce silk which they use to build webs, capture prey, float through the air (ballooning), enclose their egg sac and line burrows. This unique material and its use in trapping prey are noteworthy characteristics of spiders. Mating rituals of spiders may be very elaborate.
Impact on the Ecosystem
Spiders help manage insect populations by eating lots of insects. Medical research using spider venom has yielded several chemicals that may be useful to control or treat diseases in humans.
The spider's bite may cause pain but in most cases, the venom is usually harmless. Avoid using black widow spiders and brown recluse spiders in classroom and field study. Their venom can cause more adverse reactions in humans than other types of spider venom.
Collecting Live Insects
Where to find
Spiders build webs in shrubs, trees, along rock walls, storage rooms and in corners. Many spiders live in a retreat area off the web. Burrowing spiders may be found under rocks, logs, in debris or old litter. Be cautious of black widow spiders whose webs are strong and sticky. If they are in your area they are common in storage areas, under plants and under sheets of wood or cardboard.