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Invertebrate Stephanopis spp. (Knobbly Crab Spider)

Dusty Miller

Alexander Pearce
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Scientific Name: Stephanopis spp. Possibly altifrons or corticalis

Common Name(s): Flower spider (a generic term for Thomisidae family).

Other Names: Knobbly Crab Spider, perhaps.

Class: Arachnida

Order: Araneae

Sub-Order: Araneamorphae

Family: Thomisidae

Sub-Family: Stephanopidea

Genus: Stephanopis

Distribution: East Coast Australia in open sclerophyll forest.

Habitat: Prefers living on bark of eucalypts and other trees in sclerophyll forests.

Field Notes: Very difficult to see if not moving due to shape and colour camouflage. Extremely shy, this individual would run to the opposite side of the tree when approched. Relatively slow moving. Bites not recorded and perhaps not possible. Eyes mounted on turret style projection. Spiders of this genus often have complex body shapes to add to camouflage effect. Females to 10 mm, males same shape but a little smaller.

sunk1.jpg

Very diffilcult to see this spider when still.

sunk2.jpg

Note arrangement of eyes and head (closeup below).

unk3.jpg
 
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