Platycryptus undatus (DeGeer, 1778) - Familiar Jumper
N. M. Hentz pioneering spider studies of North America typically include
short descriptions with the emphasis on morphology
rather than behavior. His account of Attus familiaris now Platycryptus undatus is an exception. Hentz begins his section on Observations with the following:
This very common spider, almost domesticated in our houses, by its habits, deserves a longer notice than the others. Hentz then describes the stalking motion of the spider, a narrative that although it is brief gives life to his subject.
Gradually, as it draws near to the unsuspecting victim, its motions become more composed, until, when very near, its movements are entirely imperceptible to the closest observation, and, indeed, it would appear perfectly motionless, were it not for the fact that it gradually draws nearer to the insect. One hundred and fifty years after Hentz' pioneering work even such simple descriptive narratives as this one are lacking for many jumping spiders.