Admestina wheeleri Peckham & Peckham, 1888 - Jumping Spider

NA Range Map
Salticidae of North America
Richman, Cutler & Hill 2012

Nearly every general description I have read about where to find jumping spiders includes mention of trees. And although I have had some luck searching along the trunks of trees and among the leaves, my experience has been that trees are not the best place to begin looking.* Admestina spiders, however, seem to make their home on trees. Piel's (1991) review of the genus states that while relatively few of these very small salticids have actually been found, beating the branches of trees or sweeping the bark (with a small brush) may yield results. Emerton, however, found Admestina wheeleri on fences and the male shown here was first seen foraging along the wooden railing of a second story balcony. The flattened shape and small size of A. wheeleri along with what seem to me to be uncharacteristic movements may all play a part in the paucity of records.
*N.B. In the tropics, where the majority of jumping spiders live, trees and shrubs are where most salticids are found.

Massachusetts - First State / County Records

MA County Map
  • ♦ E. B. Bryant/MCZ - A. tibialis - Norfolk (Sharon), August 1902 - Piel, 1991: 277
  • ♦ *BSNH - A. t. - Middlesex (Cambridge) - Bryant, 1908: 95
  • ♦ J. H. Emerton/MCZ - A. wheeleri - Plymouth (Monponsett), June 1912 - Piel, 1991: 277
  • ♦ A. McKenna-Foster/MCZ - A. w. - Nantucket (Tuckernuck Island), August 2006 - Catalog #126885
  • ♦ Connecticut - A. t. - Kaston 1948: 472 This is an uncommon species. 3 records - Piel's revision of Kaston's records indicate that both A. tibialis and A. wheeleri may occur in that state.
  • *See Bryant, 1908

Piel's (1991) data indicate the three Admestina species occupy largely separate ranges arranged roughly north to south as A. wheeleri, A. tibialis, and A. archboldi respectively. Subsequent to Piel's work published records for A. tibialis in New Hampshire (Maddison, 1996) and the Canadian provinces of Nova Scotia, Ontario, and Québec (Paquin & Dupérré, 2003) suggest A. tibialis may also occur in Massachusetts.

Piel, W. H. 1991. The Nearctic Jumping Spiders Of The Genus Admestina (Araneae: Salticidae). Psyche. 98: 265-281.

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