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Harvestman

Harvestman
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Phalangium opilio

The harvestman is very distinctive with a round, compact body and extremely long legs.

chapelwoodBirdhouse

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Although it looks like a long-legged spider, it isn’t one. It is one of the Opilones, a group of arachnids closely related to spiders. Unlike the spiders, it has no silk glands so is not able to spin a web. It does not have fangs and does not produce venom.

It catches its insect prey by using hooks on the ends of its legs. These arachnids defend themselves by secreting a foul-smelling fluid. If they are caught, they are able to shed a leg to escape.

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What does it eat?

Small insects, snails and worms.

When will I see it?

Usually in the autumn.

Where will I see it?

Throughout the garden. Sometimes in the house.

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