Wrap Around Spider
Wrap-around spiders, members of the Dolophones genus, are fascinating arachnids with 17 endemic species found in Australia and parts of Oceania. These remarkable spiders possess a unique ability to flatten themselves against tree branches, thanks to their distinctive body shape. Their inverted-dish-shaped abdomen allows them to snugly hug the curves of trees, aided by their fuzzy legs and an astonishing camouflage. The abdomen features oval discs arranged in a peculiar pattern, earning them the nickname “leopard spider.”
Wrap-around spiders are primarily nocturnal, springing to life in the dark to construct intricate vertical orb webs. As dawn approaches, they dismantle their webs and return to their hidden positions on branches, avoiding daylight exposure. While their presence may surprise those who unwittingly grab tree branches in the bush, the good news is that they belong to the Araneida family of orb-weavers. Although they possess venom, it’s generally not particularly harmful to humans, making encounters with these unique spiders more intriguing than dangerous in the diverse ecosystems of Australia and Oceania.