Behavior

Diurnal; most active during hottest days of year, mostly in early to late summer. Often attacks and kills much larger adult hobo spiders, which are competitors for food. Jumps more than it walks. Able to jump from standing start; can also jump backward and sideway with equal abilities. This type of motion is used both to capture prey and to avoid capture by predators.

Uses third and/or fourth pair of legs for jumping. Whenever it jumps, it will release thick, white, slightly viscid silky line to use as anchor to crawl back to original position. Silk is produced from special organs (spinnerets) at rear of abdomen. Also produces silken bag ("retreat") in such places as crevices, under stones, under bark, and on foliage and plants. Bags used for protection and shelter at night, resting, molting, feeding, protecting young, and during winter to hibernate.

Prey can be noticed from distance of about 12-16 in (30-40 cm), although it is reported that it can see prey up to 8 ft (2.4 m) away. At distance of about 7.9 in (20 cm), it turns its body so that front eyes point to victim; eye muscles focus on prey and the eyes move around optical axis. Able to distinguish between prey and predators, and also capable of distinguishing color. After object is recognized as eatable, it carefully moves toward victim.

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