Facts About Globe Spiders: Behavior And Habitat

Ball spiders have a specific appearance that actually makes them look like they are smiling. Some seem to have their “smiling face” on their backs.
Facts about globe spiders: behavior and habitat

There are several members of the Theridion family who always seem to be happy. In this article we will give you some facts about globe spiders and why they are sometimes called “smiling spiders”.

The laughing spider group

You can find many dangerous and poisonous species in this large family consisting of more than 2,000 species. The black widow is an example.

But there are also other spiders called “smiling spiders” because they always have a “smiling face” on their body.

Theridion grallator is the most famous of these spiders. This spider is also known as the ‘Hawaiian Happy-Face Spider’.

As the name suggests, they live on the islands around Hawaii, mostly in the rainforests of O’ahu, Moloka’i and Maui, which are located at an altitude of almost 300 meters.

This spider is about five millimeters long and each has its own unique pattern on the body. Although most people have the “smiling face”, no two spiders are exactly alike. Their patterns even differ between the islands.

Scientists believe that they camouflage themselves with the help of patterns to protect themselves from birds, the spider’s only natural enemy on this latitude.

This arachnid also uses another technique to protect itself. It hides under the leaves of plants during the day and uses that time to spin its small nets. It then uses these nets to catch its food.

In addition, the nets help to keep the spider oriented and to find other spiders during the mating season. It is worth noting that mating takes place at night and that males die after mating.

Facts about globe spiders: their interesting names

While the spider from Hawaii is the best known of the “smiling spiders”, researchers have found new species in the Caribbean islands and in South America.

These spiders have very interesting names, as well as bodies “painted” in a very strange way.

Scientists and researchers from the University of Vermont (USA) have decided to name these arachnids from famous people from all over the world.

The idea behind it is that it is a way to honor people who defend both animal and human rights.

Smiling spiders are native to Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Colombia, the Lower Antilles, and the states of Florida and South Carolina in the United States.

Several spiders smiling

In addition to those recently discovered in the Caribbean and South America, there are other “smiling spiders” that have caught our attention.

1. The spider with cat face

Its scientific name is Araneus gemmoides and it is a weaving spider that lives in the western United States. Although it may look scary, it is not toxic. The female is larger than the male, but they are still less than an inch long.

Facts about ball spiders: Weaver spider in nets.

2. Leucauge venusta

Leucauge venusta is a spider off the east coast of the United States. It lives in orchards as well as in cities and in fields.

It has reddish or orange spots against a black background that makes it look like two eyes and a smiling mouth. It is not toxic, but it is similar in appearance to the black widow.

Leucauge venusta in net.

3. Flower crab spider

This spider looks almost more scared than smiling. The flower crab spider is a small and shy species that knows how to camouflage itself extremely well.

It makes it look like a flower, and then waits for its prey – like a bee – completely motionless.

A flower crab spider waiting for prey on a flower.

These interesting facts about globe spiders are just some amazing examples of how wonderful and interesting our nature is!

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