Always On The Lookout! Lycosa Tarantula & Scorpion!

This morning I was shooting a landscape commission in the Lower Alentejo and once I was done I took a quick look around the area. Within just 5 meters of the car (I was down a dirt track) I found a Female Tarantula Wolf Spider (Lycosa tarantula) burrow and also a Common Yellow Scorpion (Buthus occitanus).

Of course, I’m no stranger to the Tarantula Wolf Spider which is how I noticed the burrow opening, Read my other Tarantula Blog Posts.

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Ummidia Algarve Spider Burrow

As the name suggests, the Ummidia algarve Spider is a small spider that is endemic to the Algarve area. Although a very common spider, I have never stumbled across it’s unique burrow. Another name for the Ummidia species of spider is the Trapdoor Spider, it builds a close-able trap door on the entrance to the cylinder shaped burrow.

I took a walk today around the Quinta and found this burrow. (More information below image)

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Triangulate Cobweb Spider

I was taking a quick wander around the garden tonight and I spotted a small rounded spider crawling across a tightrope of silk.

At first I thought it was a European Black Widow but on closer inspection it was an equally cool Triangulate Cobweb Spider.

The scientific name is Steatoda triangulosa. Any spider belonging to the species of Steatoda is known as a False Widow due to the similar size and shape of a Black Widow. This species is not known to have any issues with biting humans but of course as with any spider a rare allergic reaction could occur.

I snapped this quick shot on my smartphone (more information continues below).

These eat other insects and spiders and can even be known to eat the only real problem spider here in Portugal, the Brown Recluse. It also eats ticks! It’s unusual to see one out in the open like this, but suspect I may have disturbed it as I cut back the large Rosemary that grows in the garden earlier today.

The name comes from the triangular patterns on its back. The female can grow to just 6mm in length.

Great News For The Lycosa Tarantula Living Near The House….But What Has She Been Up To!?

After seeing a post on a Facebook wildlife group of a possible sighting of a male Tarantula Wolf Spider, it gave me some enthusiasm to check on one of the local females, one that lives very close to the Quinta. It was quite a surprise……

The Tarantula Wolf Spider, not be confused with the Wolf Spider is the species where the original name Tarantula comes from, rather than post all the information, please see my Algarve Resident Article – Tarantula Wolf Spider.

She was at the entrance to her burrow when I arrived and as normal she wasn’t too bothered about my presence, they are not normally like this!

{Click image(s) to view on Flickr - opens in new tab}

Lycosa Tarantula (Female)
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They Grow Up So Quick!

This is the 2nd Tarantula Wolf Spider burrow that I discovered a while back (more info) and she was considerably smaller than the first one I found which of course is no longer with us.

However, this morning, I took a look to see how she was doing and noticed that she’s enlarged the burrow and weaved a huge new opening. It didn’t take long for her to come and poke herself out to see what I was doing.

Just for scale, the opening is now around 8cm! Also, the new resident down at the river burrow has closed the entrance, so I suspect she is already having babies!

{Click image(s) to view on Flickr - opens in new tab}

Tarantula Wolf Spider - Lycosa tarantula
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