Phidippus audax

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Current valid name

Phidippus audax (Hentz) (family Salticidae)

Recognition and diagnostic features

Black jumping spider with 3 white dots on the abdomen in the matures; dots in immatures can be orangish or yellowish.


Body lengths when mature: male: 4.4 - 15.2 mm, female: 4.5 - 18.1 mm

In subadults, white abdominal spots can be orangish in color.

Egg sac

Number of eggs per sac: 64 (range 15-164); 186 ± 69

Number of egg sacs per female lifetime: 2.75 (range = 1 - 6)

Size of egg: 1.26 ± 0.05 mm

Time of year eggs are likely to be laid: March through May


In California: southern California, Central Valley

Elsewhere: very common throughout the eastern U.S., introduced to Hawaii and Nicobar Island

Native to North America

This species has been transported and become established outside of its range.


Diurnal hunter. Can be found in grape bunches, and can lay eggs in bunches. Very common in the eastern U.S., introduced into California where it has become established in southern California (rare) and the Central Valley (sporadically abundant). Matures found April to June, immatures found before and after that time.

Status in table grapes

Level of Incidence: can be sporadically abundant in isolated vineyards

Level of Concern in New Zealand: WPNZ (May 2010) nr, BORIC (Dec 2011) nr (not listed), MAF-BPRA (2002) nr (coding definition)

Level of Concern in Australia: WPAU (2006) nr (coding definition)

Level of Medical importance: painful bite due to fang puncture and strong cheliceral muscles, but minor toxicological effects of venom

Common name

Bold jumping spider for species, jumping spiders for family

Taxonomic history

Many names through history, but stable the last 100 years.

Selected references

Anderson, J. F. 1990. The size of spider eggs and estimates of their energy content. J. Arachnol. 18: 73-78.

Edwards, G. B. 2004. Revision of the jumping spiders of the genus Phidippus (Araneae: Salticidae). Occasional Papers Florida St. Coll. Arthropods 11: 1-156.

Roach, S. H. 1988. Reproductive periods of Phidippus species (Araneae, Salticidae) in South Carolina. J. Arachnol. 16: 95-101.