Wild Fact #130 – Small But Colourful – Peacock Spider

Peacock Spider

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Did You Know?

  • The Peacock Spider is also known as the Gliding Spider and just happens to be a type of jumping spider
  • The unique colouring of these arachnids are quite spectacular (also the reason for their common name), however, it is only the males that possess this colourful beauty
  • While these spiders are amazing, they are also very small and can in fact fit on your fingernail, so there is no reason to be afraid of them…or is there?

Are Peacock Spiders Poisonous?

If there is one thing we have learned over the last 870 Wild Facts it is that animals are brightly coloured for a reason…usually as a warning mechanism. Is that the case with the Peacock Spider? Nah, they are brightly coloured for another reason, to impress the ladies. As mentioned, it is only the males that have the fashionable wardrobe and my goodness they know how to use it to get the female spiders attention. When you think of Peacocks, you typically think of colourful, show-boats and let me tell you, the Peacock Spider is no different. Believe it or not, the males have two flaps on their abdomen which they use exclusively for putting on a show. These tiny spiders will do all sorts of tricks with these colourful flaps with the hope of catching the eye of that one lucky lady.

Video of the Peacock Spider Display

Instead of just describing the amazing courtship behaviour, I thought it would be best to show you a short clip of the male in action. Enjoy!

Sure the music was a little obnoxious but you have to be a slightly impressed with this tiny spiders colourful dance moves.

Peacock Spider

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Where In The World?

So just where in the world can you find the amazing Peacock Spider? Well, this particular arachnid can only be found throughout parts of eastern Australia (Queensland and New South Wales). Although they can be found throughout much of their forested habitat in their limited range, these little spiders can be very tough to spot. In fact, the entomologist (aka: bug biologist) who discovered this unique species had a lot of difficulty finding them after his initial discover. But I guess this is to be expected when the specimen you are searching for is only a mere 5 mm (2″) in length. It pays to have a sharp eye if you are in the field of studying insects. Do you have a keen eye?

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