Olios giganteus
(Giant Crab Spider)

Taxonomic Hierarchy

  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Arachnida
  • Order: Araneae
  • Suborder: Araneomorphae
  • Family: Sparassidae
  • Genus: Olios
  • Species: Olios giganteus

Other Common Names

Giant Crab Spider, Golden Huntsman Spider, Huntsman Spider

Author

Eugen von Keyserling, 1884

Pronunciation

OH-lee-ohs jih-GAN-tee-uhs

Identification Traits

Disclaimer: The following table provides a quick overview of the spider's basic attributes. The physical traits are greatly generalized in order to aid in the identification and sorting of spider species using our search feature. This information is not exhaustive, and keep in mind that traits such as color, markings, and overall size and shape can vary widely within a species due to variables such as the spider's age, gender, diet, hydration level, climate, and habitat. Though experienced arachnologists and hobbyists can often classify spiders rather accurately based on their unique markings and general appearance, it's important to know that scientifically accurate spider identification relies on detailed taxonomic keys and microscopic examinations of a spider's reproductive organs.

Female iconFemale Male iconMale
Body size More information icon 14mm - 48mm 11mm - 30mm
Eye count 8
Primary Colors
Identifying Traits Fuzzy or hairy appearance, Visible spines on legs, Legs solid color, Especially long legs
Web style Retreat or silken sac


Additional Remarks

  • Legs are laterigrade, meaning that they are “twisted” at the base so as to be oriented in a horizontal plane rather than a vertical plane. This gives the spider a decidedly crab-like appearance.
  • Total leg span can reach up to 3 inches or more in the larger specimens.
  • Chelicerae (jaws) are noticeably dark brown or black and the condyles are orange (a condyle is a small rounded swelling at the base of spider chelicerae).
  • Abdomen tan or light orange with a thin black line bordering around the heart mark area.
  • Adult males have a black, spiraled (or “coiled”) embolus.
  • Egg sac is spun inside a large, spherical retreat (about 25mm in diameter) in which the female spider also resides, guarding the sac and the spiderlings that emerge from it.
  • Decades ago, this spider inspired newspaper stories of the “barking spider” in small towns in west Texas, despite the fact that it does not make any noise (Gertsch 1979).
  • Many California specimens were initially assigned the name Olios fasciculatus, which is actually an African species. Those specimens are now known to be Olios giganteus.

Featured Pictures

Picture of Olios giganteus (Giant Crab Spider) - Eyes Enlarge picture icon
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Picture of Olios giganteus (Giant Crab Spider) - Dorsal Enlarge picture icon
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Picture of Olios giganteus (Giant Crab Spider) - Dorsal Enlarge picture icon
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Picture of Olios giganteus (Giant Crab Spider) - Dorsal Enlarge picture icon
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Picture of Olios giganteus (Giant Crab Spider) - Male - Dorsal Enlarge picture icon
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Picture of Olios giganteus (Giant Crab Spider) - Dorsal Enlarge picture icon
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Picture of Olios giganteus (Giant Crab Spider) - Male - Dorsal Enlarge picture icon
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Picture of Olios giganteus (Giant Crab Spider) - Female - Dorsal Enlarge picture icon
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