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Spider Videos -
Peacock Spiders  - Maratus volans

Maratus volans, sometimes called the peacock spider or gliding spider, is a species of jumping spider. Octavius Pickard-Cambridge, who is credited with the first formal biological description and hence is noted as the person assigning it its binomial name (he originally named it Salticus volans; its name was changed to Maratus volans by Marek Zabka in 1991), wrote in his first description of it that "it is difficult to describe adequately the great beauty of the colouring of this spider". The red, blue and black coloured males have flap-like extensions of the abdomen with white hairs that can be folded down. They are used for display during mating: the male raises his abdomen, then expands and raises the flaps so that the abdomen forms a white-fringed, circular field of color. The species, and indeed the whole genus Maratus have been compared to peacocks in this respect. The third pair of legs is also raised for display, showing a brush of black hairs and white tips. While approaching the female, the male will vibrate his abdomen while waving raised legs and tail, and dance from side to side. Both sexes reach about 4- 5 mm in body length. Females and immatures of both sexes are brown but have colour patterns by which they can be distinguished from related species This species of spider poses no threat to humans. M. volans is confined to specific parts of Australia (Queensland, New South Wales, Western Australia and Tasmania). Photo below of a female (right) and male. All Maratus volans images copyright Jürgen Otto

Courtship display of the Coastal peacock spider (Maratus speciosus). This is a species of jumping spider and it inhabits coastal dune habitats near Perth in Western Australia. Filmed by Jurgen Otto with Canon 60D and 100 mm macro lens. 

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