Crab spider facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
Crab spiders
Camouflaged crab spider on a violet flower
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Arachnida
Order: Araneae
Family: Thomisidae
Sundevall, 1833
Diversity
170 genera, > 2,000 species

Crab spiders are the Thomisidae family of spiders. They have two front pairs of legs angled outward and bodies that are flattened and often angular. Also, like crabs, Thomisidae can move sideways or backward.

Crab spiders use their powerful front legs to grab and hold onto prey while paralyzing it with a venomous bite.

Crab spiders are hunters and ambushers. Some species sit on or among flowers, bark, fruit or leaves where they grab visiting insects. Their species use camouflage: several different types are known.

Some species are disguised as birds' droppings resting on a leaf. Even at a close range, it is difficult to tell the difference. Crab spiders live in rainforests all over the world. They get their name from the way they scuttle around, like small crabs.

Images for kids


Crab spider Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.