Journal

Is a Harvestman a Spider?

on
20 March 2011
Visiting Mandai Track 15 again! Weekends filled the track with lots of cyclists, so we took an alternative route that’s a lot more peaceful albeit on restricted ground.

Many have probably shot a Harvestman before, especially those who frequent the Friday night shoots at Lower Pierce. The Harvestman has 8 long legs – most would quickly assume that it is a spider. It actually belongs to the class of arachnids like spiders, but under different orders. Spiders under the order Araneae while the Harvestman belongs to the order Opiliones. Quite confusing since arachnid was derived from a Greek word that also meant “spider”!

Several species of Harvestman have been spotted in Singapore. Almost all are characterized by their long legs with respect to their small bodies.

Harvestman (Opiliones) - DSC_4708#1 Close up of a Harvestman, with a bright orange body. One leg missing ūüôĀ

Harvestman (Opiliones) - DSC_4746#2 Front view, that’s how it looks when you stare at it face to face!

Harvestman (Opiliones) - DSC_2360#3 A different kind of Harvestman with a gummy texture, found in Dairy Farm. Refer to earlier blog post Harvestman in 3D.

Harvestman (Opiliones) - DSC_1410#4 Another different Harvestman, with a bright yellow spikey body. This was found in Venus Drive, lots of them crawling around at night! Details of the post can be found here: Luzon Point Headed Termites… Are They Faceless?.

Now onto the other subjects… from Mandai!

Pear-Shaped Leucauge (Opadometa sp.) - DSC_4489#6 Beautiful bright orange orb weaver found near the entrance

Pear-Shaped Leucauge (Opadometa sp.) - DSC_4506#7 Side view of the orb weaver spider.

Long-legged Sac Spider (Miturgidae) - DSC_4547#8 This tiny little sac spider was busy chewing it’s legs… I wonder why??

Beetle - DSC_4535#9 Got another chance to meet this beautiful blue furry beetle again!

Beetle - DSC_4556#10 Standard side profile shot of the furry one

Beetle - DSC_4568#11 Face to face with the furry one. Anyone with the exact ID of this fella?

DSC_4559#12 This fly flew by, just beside the blue beetle. Freebie!!

Longhorn Beetle (Cerambycidae) - DSC_4572#13 Longhorn Beetle. Possibly the Xylotrechus Javanicus based on the patterns on it’s back.

Crane Flies (Tipulidae) - DSC_4598#14 Mating crane flies, always found them at the same tree in Mandai! These are also known as Daddy Long legs at times, just like the Harvestman.

Crane Flies (Tipulidae) - DSC_4614#15 Shot again with thinner DOF so that the subjects can stand out.

Crane Flies (Tipulidae) - DSC_4628#16 Top view, the pair was huge, 4 to 5 inches combined length.

Blue Beetle - DSC_4684#17 Another blue beetle! But thinner and hairless. Looks a little bit like a ground beetle.

Longhorn Beetle (Cerambycidae) - DSC_4681#18 A sleeping longhorn beetle

Longhorn Beetle (Cerambycidae) - DSC_4666#19 Closer look at the hair!!!

Longhorn Beetle (Cerambycidae) - DSC_4643#20 Up-close head shot of the sleeping beauty

The complete album can be viewed here.
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2 Comments
  1. Reply

    Ivan

    29 March 2011

    Harvestmen and spiders are both considered arachnids (as are scorpions, ticks and various other 8-legged critters), but belong to different groups: Spiders belong to the Araneae, while harvestmen are Opiliones.

  2. Reply

    Nicky Bay

    29 March 2011

    Thanks for the clarification Ivan! Correcting it in a moment~

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NICKY BAY
Singapore

Hi my name is Nicky Bay. I am a macro photographer, instructor and book author, travelling the world to document the vast micro biodiversity that nature has to offer. Follow my updates and discover with me the incredible beauty and science behind our planet's micro creatures!

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