Northern Crab Spider

Mecaphesa asperata

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Photo of a northern crab spider
The northern crab spider, Mecaphesa asperata, has many spiny hairs covering the top surfaces of the carapace, abdomen, and legs, and it has greenish-yellow or yellow-brown markings.
David Bruns
Family

Thomisidae (crab spiders) in the order Araneae (spiders)

Description

The northern crab spider has many spiny hairs covering the top surfaces of the carapace, abdomen, and legs, and it has usually has greenish-yellow or yellow-brown markings (similar to those on the ridge-faced crab spider). There are a wide variety of possible color combinations, however. They can be very hard even for specialists to identify with certainty.

Like other crab spiders, they generally resemble crabs: Their legs extend outward from the sides, and they can walk in any direction. Learn more about the northern crab spider and other foliage flower spiders in their group page.

 

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Photo of a northern crab spider on rough blazing star flowerhead.
Northern Crab Spider on Rough Blazing Star
A yellow northern crab spider, Mecaphesa asperata, waits for prey on a rough blazing star flowerhead.