8 January 2017 | Jade Jumping Spider | Siler semiglaucus | Pheidole ants |
It was common to find jumping spiders at my potted area along the balcony. One that caught my attention last week was a Jade Jumping Spider (Siler semiglaucus). This lone spider was patrolling at the same spot, at a designated area along the rim of the pot, for more than a week now. Sensing any threat, it would retreat to the interior side of the pot, shaded by the leaves of a young climbing fern (Lygodium flexuosum). The first time I took a picture of a Jade Jumping Spider at my home was in March 2013. Information seemed to indicate that a spider’s average lifespan was around 1 to 3 years. This might not be the same spider seen more than 3 years back.
The Jade Jumping Spider was known to prey on ants. Hence, it was not too surprising to see them around since there were plenty of ants at my balcony. One ant species that was very much entrenched in the area was Pheidole parva, a tiny and relatively inconspicuous red ant. Its dominant status was already quite obvious when I did my first household ant census in August 2015. This ant marched in neat column from one pot to another where it built their next under the soil in the pots. This particular Jade Jumping Spider was in fact eyeing on a column of ants, waiting for opportunity to pound on them.
Based on the Singapore spider checklist published about 15 years back in 2002, there were 2 Siler spiders recorded, namely Siler flavocinctus and Siler semiglaucus. Currently, there were plenty of Siler semiglaucus pictures in the Internet but not a single one existed on Siler flavocinctus. In the 2002 publication, the distribution of Jade Jumping Spider was noted as Singapore and the Philippines. Today, it appeared that this spider was far more widely distributed than originally indicated. Two recently published article had reported its presence in Thailand and India [1-2].
 Grob P. Notes on the jumping spider Siler semiglaucus (Simon, 1901) in Thailand (Araneae: Salticidae: Heliophaninae). Peckhamia 126.1 (2015);1-5. | Read article |
 Kulkarni S, Joseph S. First record of genus Siler Simon, 1889 (Araneae: Salticidae) from India. Journal of Threatened Taxa 2015;7(10):7701-7703. | Read article |