My Photography of
Platycryptus undatus babies
I was so excited to finally get to breed this type of spider, but I must admit, it has been a disappointing experience overall. I have tried to mate them several times unsuccessfully (the female killed the male without even mating). These are the babies of Renita and Rakim, two adult Platycrypti I was keeping. One photo of each parent is shown below---for more photos of the parents, click on their names below. By February 8, only one of the original 11 babies was alive, despite my daily care-taking. I can't figure out what went wrong. When I have raised jumpers of the Phidippus genus, if a baby survived a few days with me, it always survived to adulthood if I kept it that long.
Parent Spiders, Renita and Rakim.
Sadly, Renita killed Rakim on August 7th, 2010, shortly after mating. She laid the eggs shortly thereafter.
Babies at emergence from egg sac. August 30-31, 2010.
11 babies emerged from the sac. Unfortunately, three of them died within a few days. I am not sure if the flies I had were too large for them or if they weren't able to get small enough droplets of water. These photos of one of the babies were taken on August 31, 2010, on a tomato. It was only about 1/16 of an inch long. I thought it was interesting how transparent the legs were.
Photos of two spiderlings after they shed their first skins since emergence. September 26, 2010
At this point, they were a little less than 1/8" long.
Photos of two spiderlings after they shed their second skins since emergence. October 13, 2010
At this point, they were 1/8" long. I am keeping them in tubes with foam tops which seems to be working well. The eight spiders are all still alive and are kept in numbered tubes.
Update 12-10-10: This spider shed again on 10-25-10. Sadly, it died at the beginning of December, along with two other babies.
Photos of two spiderlings after they shed their third skins since emergence. December 8, 2010
At this point, they were 3/16" long. I still have 5 living babies. They actually shed their third skins in November, but I didn't have the chance to photograph them. These two were photographed on my Asaphus kotlukovi trilobite.
Photos of three spiderlings on January 9, 2011
These are the only three spiderlings alive. Soon after the previous photos were taken, two more babies died. I couldn't figure out why---they had clean surroundings, food and water. #6 and #8 seem quite healthy. #1 sometimes seems like it is half-dead (like in its boring photos below). As in the last photo shoot, spider #8 is much more cooperative and will go where I place it. I was able to get some great shots of it on my antique glass eyes. #6 has a mind of its own and rarely goes where I want it. I am not sure if any of the spiders shed since the last photo shoot. Currently, spiders #6 and #8 are 7/32" long. Spider #1 is only about 1/8" long.
Update: Sadly, spider #1 died just a few days after this shoot. I had mentioned how it seemed half-dead in the entry above, so I guess it was. Spider #6 died unexpectedly on February 8, 2011. I thought that it was shedding its skin, because Spider #8 shed on February 4th. It was in a strange position with two legs out of its sac and the other ones straight down. I thought maybe it was using the two outer legs to pull itself out of the skin. I've never seen one actually in the process of shedding, so I figured maybe that was what was going on. When I looked at it on the evening of the 7th, it moved one of its pedipalps, so it was alive, and I figured I better leave it alone and not jostle anything because of how fragile it must be. When I checked on it the next day, it was dead. I saw no partially removed skin, which made me wonder if maybe somehow it had just gotten stuck in its sac (I have seen this happen before and have rescued stuck spiders---Renita got stuck once herself) and because I didn't act on it, thinking it might be shedding, it struggled to exhaustion. It's abdomen did seem small when I found it, as if maybe it did expend a lot of energy. I was also afraid to mist it with water the previous night because I thought I would surely drown it if it couldn't walk around and either avoid or approach the droplets on its own. So it could have dehydrated. In any case, it brought me to tears to find it. I thought for sure this spider had made it past the tough times and would be with me as an adult.
Photos of spiderling #8 on February 15, 2011
This is the only spiderling left.
Visit the Platycryptus undatus Adult Jumping Spiders Page.
Go to the Main Directory of Spider Photographs.
Visit my Spider Care Page if you want to learn how to care for your own pet jumping spider.
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