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The Biology of Camel-Spiders

Arachnida, Solifugae

  • Fred Punzo

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-x
  2. Fred Punzo
    Pages 1-9
  3. Fred Punzo
    Pages 11-44
  4. Fred Punzo
    Pages 45-69
  5. Fred Punzo
    Pages 71-105
  6. Fred Punzo
    Pages 107-150
  7. Fred Punzo
    Pages 151-195
  8. Fred Punzo
    Pages 197-246
  9. Back Matter
    Pages 261-295

About this book

Introduction

My initial interest in the Solifugae (camel-spiders) stems from an incident that occurred in the summer of 1986. I was studying the behavioral ecology of spider wasps of the genus Pepsis and their interactions with their large theraphosid (tarantula) spider hosts, in the Chihuahuan Desert near Big Bend National Park, Texas. I was monitoring a particular tarantula burrow one night when I noticed the resident female crawl up into the burrow entrance. Hoping to take some photographs of prey capture, I placed a cricket near the entrance and waited for the spider to pounce. Suddenly, out of the comer of my eye appeared a large, rapidly moving yellowish form which siezed the cricket and quickly ran off with it until it disappeared beneath a nearby mesquite bush. So suddenly and quickly had the sequence of events occurred, that I found myself momentarily startled. With the aid of a headlamp I soon located the intruder, a solifuge, who was already busy at work macerating the insect with its large chelicerae (jaws). When I attempted to nudge it with the edge of my forceps, it quickly moved to another location beneath the bush. When I repeated this maneuver, the solifuge dropped the cricket and lunged at the forceps, gripping them tightly in its jaws, refusing to release them until they were forcefully pulled away.

Keywords

anatomy arachnid biology ecology phylogeny physiology taxonomy

Authors and affiliations

  • Fred Punzo
    • 1
  1. 1.University of TampaUSA

Bibliographic information