Daddy long legs

DADDY LONGLEGS

Contrary to popular belief, “Daddy Longlegs” are NOT spiders; but are however related to spiders, much like scorpions, ticks & mites. Daddy Longlegs are also known as “the Harvestman”. They are called that because they’re most conspicuous in the Fall.

If you look at the body of a Daddy Longlegs, you’ll see why it’s not a spider. Instead of its body consisting of two parts (the cephalothorax and the abdomen), as with spiders, a Daddy Longlegs has its head, thorax, and abdomen all fused together. Second, instead of the spider’s usual eight eyes, it just possesses two.

Although some people will tell you “Daddy Longlegs have small mouthparts, but they have the most poisonous venom of all spiders!” This is just an urban myth. Daddy Longlegs contain no venom.

Daddy Longlegs eat a wide variety of foods, including: aphids, caterpillars, beetles, flies, earthworms, decaying plant and animal matter, bird droppings, fungi, spiders and even other harvestmen.

Every ten days or so the average Daddy Longlegs molts. It splits open its body case, or exoskeleton, then takes about 20 minutes to drag its long legs from their old casings. They release a stinking odor as a defense against predators. The small-bodied, long-legged one is the male; whereas the female will appear more like a common spider with a larger body and smaller legs.

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