A wildlife enthusiast discovered a spider species atypical to Norway in the eastern part of the country, reports say.
Finn Ove Mosti from Oslo discovered it in Rakkestad, Østfold County, while looking for dragonflies.
He initially thought it the species was quite common to the area, but another look at the photo gave him doubts.
Mr Mosti contacted several experts, who believe it could be a great/fen/raft spider (Dolomedes plantarius). This would probably be the first found in Norway, if so.
Dolomedes plantarius is Europe’s largest but least common species of European species. Occurring mainly in neutral to alkaline waters, it is semi-aquatic and hunts its prey on the surface of the water.
Its body is normally brown or black in colour, with ‘go faster’ cream or white stripes along the side. Adult females’ body length is more than 20mm long and has a 70mm span including its legs (about 0.78 by 2.75 inches).
Finn Ove Mosti told NRK the spider he discovered has a body measuring about 2cm in length and about 9cm total (roughly 3.55 inches) including the legs.
He added that it was the very faint markings on the spider that made him think it was unusual, having first believed it to be of the fishing/raft/dock/wharf species (Dolomedes). According to him, this is Norway’s largest free-living species.
“This species has not been determined in Norway earlier, although many spider enthusiasts have thought it really should exist here.”
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