Garden Visitor

Harvestman Spider

Harvestman Spider

“My leaf,” as the harvestman spider always seems to say as it spread its characteristic loooong legs over leaves and flowers and is often called a daddy long legs. They have eyes but cannot form images and so explore their world with these long legs. They are arachnids but not truly spiders, and where spiders spin and weave webs and generally hunt and eat live or fresh killed prey, harvestmen are generally scavengers or catchers of insects that don’t move too fast, and even eat decomposing plant material. Despite their somewhat threatening appearance, they are the good ones to have around as they tend to clean up, eat pesty insects, and are not at all venemous. And yes, if you pick them up by one of their legs it usually will fall off as a defense mechanism to evade predators. Please don’t try it, though.

The geranium leaf is well suited to the harvestman’s long legs reaching out in all directions. Read more about the difference between harvestmen and other similar species called a daddy long legs that really is a spider, and a flying insect that resembles them both.

Harvestman Spider

This is my leaf.

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All images in this post are copyright © Bernadette E. Kazmarski and may not be used without prior written permission.

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