Phidippus audax – Daring Jumping Spider

Phidippus audax, commonly known as the daring jumping spider is a jumping spider found throughout the USA. As their name suggests, the daring jumping spider is known for its audacious jumps. It can jump up to 50 times its own body length.

Description of the Daring Jumping Spider

Phidippus audax - Daring Jumping Spider
The Daring Jumping spider just about to jump. Photography by: K. J. Ester – Macomb, Michigan

Phidippus audax are black with three marks on the abdomen. When they are young, the three spots on the abdomen are of orange color. As they grow older, those markings will turn white. The abdomen is larger than the cephalothorax. It can easily be mistaken with a male Regal Jumping spider that has a very similar appearance and markings.

The legs are short for spiders and it uses its back legs for its jumps. The spider suddenly increases blood pressure in the back legs which catapults it towards its destination.

Picture of a daring jumping spider
The green metallic fangs of the Phidippus audax

They have eight eyes. Four across the front and two along each side. The two middle eyes in the front are much larger than any others.

The most telling feature to distinguish the Daring Jumping Spider from other Jumping Spiders are the fangs. The Daring Jumping Spider’s chelicerae has a green metallic coloring.

Size

The Daring Jumping Spider will grow to about 3/4 inch (19 mm).

Web

Being hunters, the only time the daring jumping spider spins a web is just before the jump. They will attach a drag-line to the surface it is jumping from in case the jump fails. And sometimes they create webs as pup tents at night to rest in.

Bites

Jumping Spiders will usually run and hide rather than attack a human, but there are cases where people do get bit. They get listed in the little to no risk category. However, there are cases of the bites causing pain and significant swelling. The more serious, but rare cases can cause headaches, fever, chills, nausea and vomiting that can last a few days.

Scientific Classification of Phidippus audax

  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Subphylum: Chelicerata
  • Class: Arachnida
  • Order: Araneae
  • Infraorder: Araneomorphae
  • Family: Salticidae
  • Genus: Phidippus
  • Species: Phidippus audax

Other Names

Daring Jumping Spider or Bold Jumping Spider.

Distribution of the Daring Jumping Spider in the USA

Phidippus audax – Daring Jumping Spider range map

The daring jumping spider can be found in every US state – Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming

More pictures of the daring jumping spider

Daring-Jumping-Spider seen in Michigan
Daring Jumping Spider USA Spiders
Daring Jumping Spider
Photography by: K. J. Ester – Macomb, Michigan

Phidippus audax – Daring Jumping Spider

24 thoughts on “Phidippus audax – Daring Jumping Spider

  1. Apologies if this has already been identified- I couldn’t find it myself. Found on the rock beach near Mount Saint Sauveur Acadia National Park, Maine.

  2. I’ve been spending hours trying to find out what kind of jumer my little girl is, i live in Texas close to the gulf, and she’s a female, i think she’s a dare devil jumper but I’m just not sure, i found her in my backyard. Could you tell me what she is? (Image of her from the top below)

    1. Hi Lachlan,
      It appears to be a Twin Flagged Jumper (Anasaitis Canosa). If you had a chance to observe it for a bit, you may have noticed the white marking on each pedipalp. They “wave” their pedipalps up and down repeatedly at times. Sort of like waving two white flags which may have inspired the common name. They are common in leaf littered woodlands, but I have also seen them in pineneedles where there were only a few pine trees overhead, as well as found several in and on my home which is not in the woods. Here is a video link if you want to observe their pedipalp waving behavior: https://archive.org/details/DavidEdwinHillCourtshipandmatingbehaviorofAnasaitiscanosajumpingspidersinGreenvilleCountySCUSA

  3. And my other one show is really small and pretty, found her on my window a while back, i haven’t got a clue to what type of jumper she is however. If anyone has any ideas to what she may be that would be awesome!!! (Pic of her below)

  4. My husband found this spider in his camper shower. He recently traveled to Tupelo, Oklahoma. I’ve tried identifying the spider online but I can’t find one exactly like it. It looks similar to a black house spider but the back is more rounded. Me husband described the spider as a quarter in size. 🤷‍♀️The spider has light gray and white around it’s knuckles and is a little hairy.

  5. I work at a local greenhouse in Michigan. This was waiting for me on the hose handle this morning.., and I can’t seem to ID it? We also have 8000+ plants from all over the U.S. – so maybe it isn’t a Michigan spider?

  6. I just found a male who looks almost exactly like the photo of the male in this description in the San Francisco Bay Area (east bay, just a few blocks from the water). You’d better revise that range map. I have seen several small Bold Jumping Spiders here (though they were actually quite shy), but this is the first time I have noticed this species.

    1. Hello Cat, thanks for pointing that out. You are right, bold jumpers are now also found on the west coast as well as on Hawaii.

      1. Hello Cat, sorry, there was some confusion. The spider on the image is a bold jumping spider – Phidippus audax. They are also found in the Western U.S. and in Hawaii. The post here is about Phidippus regius, which is strictly limited to the Southeastern U.S. Black P. regius can look almost identical to P. audax like the one on your picture: https://usaspiders.com/phidippus-audax-daring-jumping-spider/

  7. Not much smaller than a pinkie fingernail. Black and looks like white “fuzzy” markings on body and legs. It has a turquois mark near its’ head and one much larger leg on the front right side. Hope the image is large enough to make an identification. Thanks

  8. Do jumping spiders fangs change color? I have been watching a video of one and I have noticed her fangs different colors.

    1. Hello Tom, bold jumpers often have iridescent chelicerae or fangs. Depending on the angle you look at them, the color can range from silver, light blue, intense blue to even orange or reddish. Quite fascinating to look at them 🙂

  9. Good Afternoon,

    This little guy visited my balcony last night. I put out my finger and he jumped right on. I would tap further up my arm and he would jump where I tapped. He was a fun little guy. I know he/she’s a jumper, don’t know what kind? I put him back on one of my plants. I hope he hangs out for a while!

  10. Found him having made a little web on my cactus in Central Ohio near Sunbury, north of Columbus. I had to shoo him out of his web, which looks vaguely like a venue flytrap, to get a picture of him. He’s sort of reddish-brown with more emphasis on the brown and has some white spots. He’s only got 4 eyes as far as I can tell. Definitely a bit hairy and quite annoyed with me.
    I’m happy to leave him be so long as he isn’t dangerous, though I’m not sure he’ll be able to find much to eat in my room…

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