Ducati Sac Spider

collected in 2011
Scientific Name:
Apostenus ducati
Common Name:
Ducati Sac Spider

Because it is so difficult to catch, the newly described Ducati Sac Spider, Apostenus ducati, was named for the famous racing motorcycle. These spiders are incredibly fast, especially the males! We suspect that is in part why it had not previously been collected.

Both sexes have paired spatulate hairs on their feet called tenent macrosetae, and it is likely that these are what help to make this spider so speedy. The widened ends of these hairs may allow the spider to have a better grip on surfaces, similar to the toes of a gecko.

Efforts by Royal BC Museum staff and volunteers to document the spider fauna of the province first turned up this previously unknown tiny sac spider during field work in Kootenay Pass in 2009. Intensive surveying has shown that occupied sites are widely scattered and the species usually occurs in very low numbers at any site. All specimens have been found on the undersides of rocks in open talus and scree slopes at higher elevations. So far the Flathead Valley is the only area where this species is relatively common. This species is only one of two members of this genus in North America.

This object selected by Claudia Copley.