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Portrait of an Adult Male Phidippus putnami Jumping Spider | by Thomas Shahan
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Portrait of an Adult Male Phidippus putnami Jumping Spider

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Phidippus putnami has to be without doubt one of the most handsome salticids out there. I photographed this fantastically ornamental and fluffy guy back in August of 2010 and somehow must have looked over this shot (a significantly cropped single shot with the 50mm reversed to extension tubes). The anterior median eyes of these males are often a deeply vivid and saturated green like little emeralds (a bit like P. mystaceus), but despite being in immaculate shape, somehow this specimen's eyes were considerably less lackluster and more maroon than I've seen. Absolutely beautiful nonetheless - and maybe the "greenness" had more to do with my lighting setup than the specimen itself. Like all salticids, he had quite a personality and was a pretty tough subject to work with. After a couple hours, I eventually had to resort to photographing him through the mouth of a mason jar just to keep track of him. The method didn't help to ease the struggle much as he was big, healthy, and dead set on jumping right on the lens.


To flesh the story out a bit, I'll include the original description from August 3rd, 2010 coupled with my first posting of this guy, and additional detail shots in the comment section below:




"Here's another one of those shots I've been planning on taking for years - and now I've gotten it - full frame as well! My daily wanderings paid off a couple days ago as I was making my way along a trail (following a large robber fly). A little form on the railing of a wooden bridge caught my eye from about 20 feet away, and as I took a couple steps closer - it spun around to greet me and I immediately recognized the face as an adult male Phidippus putnami.


These adult males have to be some of the wildest and hairiest spiders out there - the markings and tufts of hair are just unparalleled (excluding some of the really wild Habronattus species out west). "




And for what it's worth, I recently started both a Google + account and a twitter if anyone would like to follow what's going on with me and my photography:!/ThomasShahan

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Taken on August 2, 2010