Saturday, February 7, 2009

Camera Critters

Photobucket
This is a whip spider aka tailless whip scorpion, the species is Damon variegatus. It's neither scorpion nor spider, though, whip spiders form their own order in the arachnid class, the Amblypygi.

They have powerful pinchers (pedipalps) and the first pair of legs is modified into very long feelers, the namegiving whips. D. variegatus has whips that are about 12" long, the body of the animal is about 2" long. Those are used to search for prey (the one in the pictures is feeding on a crickets). Whip spiders are extremely fast, but very shy and to me, they are among the most alien looking creatures on earth. They can pinch, but otherwise they are totally harmless to humans and other mammals, they have no venom and prefer to run away when disturbed.

Photobucket

See more (and probably cuter) critters over at the Camera Critters meme

21 comments:

Your EG Tour Guide said...

Very odd looking. The legs do look like they could move very fast!

ratmammy said...

Yikes!!

Carolina said...

Okay, harmless then. Still, I would run! Informative post, like it.

Sue said...

I hope I don't bump into this fellow! What a cool looking critter though :) Great pics :)

My Camera Critters entry is here

Thank you for stopping by! :)

Teena in Toronto said...

Ew! Not a fan of those kinds of critters.

I played too :)

Grammy said...

Thats awesome. I have never seen one of them.

i beati said...

yikes running

Misty Dawn said...

I must admit... I'm not easily creeped out by bugs or critters, but I think this one would creep me out ;-P

Janie said...

Interesting camera critter. It looks scary, but I guess that's its only defense.

Snap said...

Interesting, but not something I think I'd enjoy running into! Thanks!

Kerri said...

Yikes! That is one scary critter!!

Reader Wil said...

This is very interesting! Where do they live? I have never seen these animals.Good post.

Tink *~*~* said...

That is one scary looking critter. It might run away when it saw me, but I would be running just as fast!

Tink *~*~*
My Mobile Adventures *~*~* Presents: Ring-billed gulls, and “the circle of life”

NoBS said...

UMM! gross...

Dianne said...

he's cute - I love odd looking creatures :)

Villas Girl said...

Hi! This is a creepy looking critter. I wouldn't to come across one of these.

Babooshka said...

Ew. Really fabulous close up and rather you than me.

June said...

I don't care if they are harmless...I'll be the one running!

Lilli & Nevada said...

Oh yuck, i don't think i have seen one like this. He is very scary looking

Adrienne in Ohio said...

It doesn't seem to matter that this spider is harmless. My first thought is "Run away! Run away!" :) I know it's irrational, but spiders just have that effect on me. Where did you find him?

Adrienne in Ohio said...

Oh my goodness! I can't believe this lives in your home on purpose!! LOL.