18 October 2014

Camel Spider near Tabuk – Record by Viv Wilson

This young? Camel Spider was photographed by Viv Wilson in the desert near Tabuk and he has kindly allowed me to use the photos on my website. The Camel Spider is not a spider but belongs to the class Arachnida, but while all spiders are arachnids, not all arachnids are spiders. Another common name is wind scorpion, but it’s not a scorpion, either. The camel spider is of the Solifugae order, which is Latin for “those who flee from the sun”. and are primarily nocturnal. Solifugae live in dry desert climates; have powerful fangs, and a segmented abdomen. Though camel spiders appear to have ten legs, they actually have eight. The two extra leg-like appendages are sensory organs. Camel Spiders can reach up to 15 cm in length and weigh about 55 grams. They have powerful jaws, which they use to catch prey and which can be up to one third of their body length, but are non-venomous. They are most commonly found in Middle Eastern deserts and are carnivores that eat other insects, lizards, small birds and rodents. There are hundreds of species of Camel Spider in the world.