Here we have another spider mother who nurtures her eggs with such dedication she carries them about with her. I found her dangling from a roof beam in the shed at the bottom of my garden. Daddy Long-legs Spider (Pholcus phalangioides), is the name and this is the first time I have managed to get up close enough to get some pictures of her and her eggs.
The peak breeding season is between June and September. The female can hold between 20 to 30 eggs in her pedipalps, and will do so for up to four weeks depending on the conditions. She will eat any that hatch unsuccessfully, and will watch over the healthy young for about another week when they should be able to fend for themselves.
Garden shed, Staffordshire, England. June 2017.
You may have met this character before in a previous post of mine. His name is Daddy Long-legs Spider (Pholcus phalangioides). He is always in the same spot in my garage, hanging upside down at the base of the wall by the side door. He has chosen his spot well, for the ants have found a way in here, too, and the clever one here intercepts them on their path, picking them off when he fancies a snack.
For more information on this spider please visit the previous post Something Alien.
Daddy Long-legs Spider (Pholcus phalangioides)
Whenever I see this species of spider I find the way it holds itself as it clings to a surface makes it look quite alien. I mainly find these in my garden sheds or garage, and occasionally they will venture indoors into my home.
Also called the ‘Cellar Spider’, this spider has distinctively long slender legs. The carapace and abdomen are pale greyish-brown. Body length up to 10mm in both sexes.
When they are disturbed they vibrate their bodies rapidly and become a blur to put off predators. The females carry their fairly large and visible eggs in their jaws. They predate on other insects, catching them in their sticky webs, and then grasping them with their long spindly legs.
Seen all year round. This spider is often found upside down in a loose, almost formless web in sheds, garages, and other outbuildings, houses and always indoors. They are also found in caves. Commoner in warmer climes and fairly widespread.
Photographs taken April 2007, garden shed, May 2012, on garden bin, June 2014, on rear fence, and July 2015, rear garden, Staffordshire.