University of Missouri Extension

G7386, Revised March 2003


Jumping spiders (Salticidae)

Nonpoisonous spiders

Jumping spiders

Jumping spiders vary from small to medium-sized with stout bodies and short legs. The cephalothorax and abdomen are nearly equal in size. The body is usually very hairy and is often iridescent or brightly colored. They usually live in the tops of low-growing plants. Males often have peculiar bunches of hairs or spots on their legs and head, and they use these features to attract the attention of females during courtship and mating.

Unlike most spiders, jumping spiders forage for prey during the day. Since they are active during the day, they are often noticed by humans. They do not use silk to make a web for capturing prey. Instead, they stalk their prey by approaching slowly to a short distance before making a sudden leap onto it. They use silk as an anchor, attaching a strand before leaping. This allows them to climb back to their original location if they miss the prey.

G7386 Spiders | University of Missouri Extension

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