Portrait of a Jumper.


Jumping spiders are great fun to photograph, expressive as they appear to be. In my limited experience, I get a chance to see them more often in more man-made environments: desks, walls, indoors, and on my pants even. They’re far harder to get a-hold of on a plant or in a bush.

A most opportune time to catch them in the “wild” is when they’re getting set to molt. The disadvantage is that molting often happens at night, with the spiders prepping come late evening, so you need to find ’em by then and keep shooting.

I came across a female Two-Striped Jumper, Telamonia dimidiata earlier in the year. Twitchy little spider that she was, the photograph below is the best I could do before nightfall.

Jumping spider pre-molt

As night fell, the jumping spider found itself a leaf that it liked, and started building a protective web under it.

Telamonia dimidiata

The web was quite tough, and it seemed as if the spider felt really comfortable inside it. While the jumper continued to spin round and round and pace about its little bunker, it also allowed me to go in closer and shoot a lot better.

31718405-Telamonia_dimidiata_looking_at_you
31718471-A_penseive_Telamonia_dimidiata

I love the texture of Telamonia‘s carapace, and the red stripess running down its length.

Metadata Canon Powershot G11. Edited using Picasa 3.8 and Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 3. Taken in April 2011 in front of my house in Bangalore, India.
Oh, and wikipedia says that the spider is found in tropical rain forests. Be that as it may, I’ve see dimidiata spiders three times so far: once at home (in the middle of Bangalore city), another time at my workplace on the edge of town, and a third time at the Gulf of Mannar. None of them come close to being rainforests.

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Portrait of a Jumper.

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