The Abracadabrella is undoubtedly one of the most brilliant jumping spiders you’ll ever set your eyes on. From their extraordinary vision to impeccable jumping skills to mesmerizing spider display and antics, you’ll no doubt find the Abracadabrella jumping spider charming and intriguing.
Like most jumping spiders, Abracadabrella is a genus of spiders and belongs to the family Salticidae. And despite their fiery jumping spider looks, our leaper friends appear to mimic flies as they share certain characteristics with flies.
And just so you know, this jumping spider species was first described by Ludwig Koch in 1879 as the Marptusa elegans. However, it seemed to have been transferred to Ocrisiona by Eugene Simon in 1901 and finally to Abracadabrella by Marek Zabka.
Do you want to learn more about Abracadabrella jumping spiders and what makes them unique? Read on to find other exciting details about our leaper friends.
What is their scientific name?
If you know anything about jumping spiders, you’ll know that most of them have a common name they are called. But for our leaper friends we are currently looking at, there doesn’t seem to be a common name they are called; instead, their scientific name, Abracadabrella, has taken precedence over the years.
And if you have followed up closely, you’ll know that this genus of jumping spider has carried on different scientific names in the past. Before being called the Abracadabrella jumping spider, Ludwig Koch, in 1879, referred to this genus of jumping spiders as the Marptusa elegans. Similarly, in 1901, Eugene Simon called our leaper friends the Ocrisiona.
Now that you know a thing or two about the scientific name of our spider friends, it’s time to give you a detailed description of their physical features, size, what they love to eat, and a little bit of insight into their temperament.
Physical description and size
Because they share some characteristics with flies, Abracadabrella jumping spiders are sometimes called flea mimicking spiders.
To start with, Abracadabrella spp. are small to medium-sized jumping spiders with a body length that ranges from 3 to 7 mm. While their cephalothorax is low in profile, it is highest at the posterior lateral eyes. When viewed from above, their head appears pear-shaped and somewhat widest behind the posterior lateral eyes.
Let us also add that their abdomen is elliptical. Plus, they spot two black and rounded mounds on the rear of the abdomen. Also, these appear to mimic the eyes of large flies.
Furthermore, their chelicerae have a single retromarginal tooth and two teeth opposite their promargin. While their legs aren’t particularly massive or elongated, their first pair of legs appear slightly more robust than others.
Adult males of this spider species spot a long, thin, and tapering embolus that rises at around 6 o’clock, proceed gently clockwise and ends with a slender and curved tip at about 1 o’clock. In males, the tegulum spots a somewhat vitreous-looking shield, which appears just over the lower part. Also, their simple tapered retro-lateral tibia apophysis looks a little shorter. Adult females have a particularly small and medium epigynal atrium that seats just opposite their epigastric fold.
Where are they from?
While Abracadabrella spp. Has the ability to thrive and survive in every environment they are introduced to; our leaper friends have been mostly sighted in Queensland. You’ll commonly spot them on warmer parts in this location, especially on vegetations and under the bark of gum trees.
Over the years, our spider friends have been sighted at Townsville, Darwin NT, Wooloolga, Grafton NSW, and Gosford. There have also been documented reports of a Western Queensland species spotted in Southern Australia and Birdsville.
Outside Australia, our leaper friends have also been spotted in Europe, especially in the Northern Territory all the way to South Wales. And even though they have a huge presence in Asia, experts believe they are introduced in this region.
Habitat and distribution
While the Abracadabrella jumping spider does very well in any environment, they particularly prefer to hide under the bark of trees or on foliage. So if you’re looking to catch a glimpse of what our spider friends look like, here is where you should be looking.
Also, you should commonly sight them in rainforests, especially around the heavily vegetated coastal areas from Gosford NSW to eastwards Darwin.
Like other jumping spiders, the Abracadabrella jumping spider is a brilliant spider with excellent vision and impeccable jumping skills. Thanks to their wonderful eyesight, our leaper friends can spot their prey from some distance away, patiently stalk them and pounce on them with their devastating jumps.
While they particularly like to feed on flies, they also feast on other smaller insects like mosquitoes, aphids, ants, crickets, and more in the wild.
When they aren’t pouncing on their prey, their impressive jumping skills allow them to evade the danger posed by predators.
What is their temperament?
If you don’t already know, we are happy to let you know that the Abracadabrella jumping spider is one of the most friendly jumping spiders you’ll ever come across. Even though it acts aggressively towards its prey, it is harmless and maintains its cool around humans.
Because of their friendly and intelligent nature, many exotic pet lovers will enjoy adding them to their collections.
Is it dangerous or venomous to humans?
Jumping spiders may look all cute and harmless, but guess what? Our leaper friends aren’t afraid to bite when they are handled roughly or feel threatened. Plus, their venom is potent enough to incapacitate their prey.
That said, their venom isn’t harmful to humans. And except you’re somewhat allergic to spider bites, a bite from Abracadabrella jumping spiders will not harm you.
Frequently asked questions
Can you keep them in a terrarium?
If you plan to keep our leaper friends in captivity, then it’s okay to keep them in a terrarium. However, ensure that their enclosure is spacious enough as they like to roam around freely.
How big are the males?
Even though adult males of this jumping spider species are slightly smaller than their female counterparts, they are largely medium-sized and measure between 3 to 5 mm.
What do they eat?
Our leaper friends will feed on small and large insects, including butterflies, flies, crickets, ants, aphids, and more.