Eight legged chameleon

On to the Bug of the Week.

One of these days, I'll actually post one of the Hemiptera (that is, a bug) as the Bug of the Week, just to prove that I know what one is.  Today, I'm going to demonstrate my embrace of the vernacular by adding a couple of legs.



This is a Flower Crab Spider (Misumena vatia).  It also features a bumblebee (probably Bombus mixtus, although the angle could be better,) but the drama it implies has reached its final act.  I think it's pretty clear that it's all about the spider now.

One of the interesting things about these spiders is that they are chameleons.  The females have the ability to change their body color to match the flowers they're hunting on, as long as the flowers are yellow or white.  It's obviously effective: this worker set down on a good-looking (and better-smelling) blackberry flower, ran out her tongue to tank up on nectar, and bam!  She's on the Internet.  They say that fame is a harsh mistress...

The color change takes about a week, so I won't be using it as an example of Cool Arthropod Tricks on day hikes any time soon.

Still: chameleon spiders.

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