Tuesday, 12 January 2016

Pisaura mirabilis (Clerck, 1757) - Nursery web spider - Cyprus

Family: Pisauridae
The nursery web spider Pisaura mirabilis is a spider species of the family Pisauridae. It was described in chapter 5 of the book Svenska Spindlar by the Swedish arachnologist and entomologist Carl Alexander Clerck.

Description
The male is between 10–13 mm, while the female is 12–15 mm.

Mating system
Males of this species offer a nuptial gift to potential female mates. Some Pisaura mirabilis have also been observed to use thanatosis during courtship. After presenting the nuptial gift to the female she bites on to the gift and the male moves to her epigyne to deposit sperm with his pedipalps. Throughout copulation the male keeps a leg on the gift so as to be ready if she tries to escape with it or attack him. At this time the male may feign death – his limbs become straight and he is dragged along with the female while holding on to the gift. When the female stops the male will slowly "resurrect" and continue attempting to mate. Thanatosis in Pisaura mirabilis has been observed to significantly increase the male's odds of successfully copulating from less than 30% to 89%. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Photos Lakatamia
, 4/1/2016 by Michael Hadjiconstantis

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