Peckhamia picata (Hentz, 1846) - Jumping Spider
First described by Hentz in 1846 as Synemosyna picata and later by Emerton as Syageles picata, this ant mimic ultimately received the name
Peckhamia picata. The Peckhams in fact wrote the first comprehensive paper on North American ant-mimicing salticids (see below). The paper describes the characteristic movements and displays of P. picata. Of the five species of salticid ant mimics in Massachusetts Synemosyna formica is the most commonly encountered. The remaining 4 (possibly 5) species: P. picata, Sarinda hentzi, Synageles noxiosus, (S. bishopi), and Tutelina formicaria are seldom recorded. Their relative "rarity" is likely an indicator of their successful ant-like adaptations of both form and behavior. I certainly can attest to remarks made by Hentz and Emerton that these mimics are very easy to overlook - even when one is looking carefully! And once again Tom Murray pointed the way - to a location for this species where I was able to shoot some video.
Massachusetts - First State / County Records
- ♦ A. McKenna-Foster/MCZ - Peckhamia picata - Dukes (Nantucket) - October 2009
- ♦ T. Murray - P. p. - Worcester (Bolton) - BugGuide node 933356
- ♦ Connecticut - P. p. - Kaston, 1948: 452 - 2 records with the comment This species is rare in New England . . . Emerton found them among dead leaves on the ground
Peckham, G. W. & E. G. Peckham.1892. Ant-like spiders of the family Attidae. Occasional Papers of the Natural History Society of Wisconsin 2(1): 1-83, plates I-VII.