Spotted Wolf Spider – Pardose amentata

This species probably deserves special mention in that it is perhaps one of the most abundant arthropods present in the garden, certainly the most abundant of macro arachnids (there may be mites etc that are more numerous).

Large numbers of males in particular are seen patrolling the ground, throughout the leaf litter, the fences, stony places and along the edges of flower pots. In truth this could be one of several species, we just think P.amentata is the most likely species.

Like all members of this family P.amentata has 8 eyes but in general only the larger 4 on top can be seen. The image below taken head on shows all eight. This is a male and you can also see the large pedipalps (use primarily for reproduction), covered in dense dark hair.

10th April 2022

The female is generally paler than the male and as can be seen below only the larger 4 eyes are visible.

10th April 2022

The female of this species is unusual in that she will carry around her egg-sac for protection. This is a very common sight during the summer in the garden. Making the female appear to have a enlarged abdomen.

Once thing we only discovered in 2022 and witnessed for the first time, is the mother spider also carries around her hatched young for a period of time.

Carrying young

Definitely one of those species where courtship is a risky affair, for the guys that is. In the video below the male, in a tip-toe, raised up posture approaches the female. Ultimately she’s not interested.

Leaving the male, still fixed on tip toes wondering what went wrong. Better luck next time mate!