[List of Genera]
Comparison of Drawings
[Regional Keys to Genera]
[Descriptions of New Taxa]
Salticidae: Diagnostic Drawings Library
by Jerzy Proszynski, 2000
Advices on modern field\laboratory work on taxonomy of Salticidae
Heretofore field work on Salticidae, as well as on other spiders,
consisted on collecting large quantities of specimens, preserved in alcohol,
and after some time later (in some cases 100 years) examined under stereomicroscope,
identification and making preparation and drawings. After long preservation
specimens are usually faded, often entirely devoid of natural colors, and thus
very difficult to recognise. One should remember than in some Salticidae (for
example in Euphrys, Talavera, etc) changes in color pattern take
place within a few hours after preservation in alcohol. Natural colors are long
preserved in dry specimens, their bodies, however, get distorted during drying
(could be softened after keeping some 24 hours in very humid air, later can
be transfered to water and then still later to 72% ethyl alcohol)..
It was a surprize for me to see how useful for taxonomic purposes may be beautiful
color pattern characters, preserved on color photograph snapped from alive specimens.
Good examples are:
[ Bianor albobimaculatus] [
Euophrys frontalis] [ Euophrys sulfurea]
[ Talavera petrensis] [
Color photographs make redundant long morphological descriptions, taking often
a page, or more of print.
Confronting 40 years of my taxonomic experience with methods employed by some
modern naturalists, I would strongly suggest the following steps in taxonomic
1. Spider, whenever possible, should be photographed first in their natural
environment, their retreats and nids are of particular interest.
2. Specimens should be collected alive into empty vial, stopped with cotton
wool. The best collecting method is covering specimen with a vial, if moves
too fast, then sholud be chased into entomological sweeping bag, or net, and
then covered with a vial.
3. Specimen should be released in laboratory in a place prapared for photographing
(best would be a Petri dish, with some selected background, camera ready, lights
4. First moments after spider left vial, when moves uncertainly - are particularly
convenient for photography; also encounters with other specimens, especially
male and female).
5. Photographs should be taken in front position (showing surrounding of eyes,
chelicerae, palps), lateral view and dorsal view. The best method is photographing
with digital camera and storing photos on computer hard disk. This ensures permanent
storage, easy retrieval and flexibility of usage.
6. When identification of species is uncertain, one palp of male should be amputated
from anestetized specimen (ether, chloroform, etc) and preserved or photographed,
also female's epigynum can be photographed on light anesthetized specimen.
7. Photographic documentation is sufficient for scientific record purposes.
Majority of specimens should be released into their environment after photographs
are taken. [Attention: no release of alive specimens brought to other geographic
areas!]. Only in exceptional cases a few specimens of both sexes can be permanently
preserved (in 75% ethyl aclohol, or other media) for comparative purposes; for
molecular study (DNA etc) preservation in 98% (or absolute 100%) ethyl alcohol
are suggested. Obligatorily type specimens series of a new taxon should be preserved;
holotypes and allotypes stored and available to specialists in a large Zoological
8. Immature specimens collected in field can be kept alive for several weeks
until mature and useful for photography and genital study. Adequate air humidity
and moderate temperature should be manintain in vials. Feeding could be done
by releasing into vial drosophila flies, or any harmless insects, from time
to time. Some 90 species feed additionally on flower nectar or water with sugar.
9. R. R. Jackson developed method of rearing Salticidae for behavioral experiments
from young, till mature, mate, egg laying, and growing up next generation from
eggs till maturity and mating. He keeps these during many generations.