Wave your hands in the air and dance like the Peacock Spider

// January 29th, 2014 // Science

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This festive little critter knows how to party.  It’s fancy name is Maratus volans but we prefer the more descriptive term, peacock spider (or “gliding spider”), a species of jumping spider with colorful red, blue, black, and green flap-like extensions on its abdomen that it raises for display during mating.   The colorful little showboat’s artistic characteristics don’t end there either – while approaching its potential mate, the male peacock spider will vibrate its abdomen and dance from side to side while raising its legs and tail for added attractiveness.

The peacock spider can be found in specific parts of Australia (Queensland, New South Wales and Western Australia) and being only 5mm in length, is pretty easy to miss.  It’s believed there are about 20 species living there but thus far, only eight have been formally identified (the cinematographer extraordinaire of tiny dancing spiders is Jürgen Otto who has helped identify 10 new species of peacock spider so far in the last five years).

Check out the animated gifs of the peacock spider doing its little dance below.

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Sources: Wikipedia, Daily Mail, Wired Magazine, Amusing Planet




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