The Spider the Internet Is Obsessed With: Jumping Spiders Are Cute yet Deadly

Eva Hagan - Author

Jan. 8 2024, Published 10:59 a.m. ET

A furry jumping spider sits on the edge of a leaf.
Source: iStock

Putting the words cute and spider next to each other may seem like a contradiction; but for jumping spiders, it just might not be. These little guys are too cute to be afraid of, as they're known for their huge sets of eyes and furry bodies.

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However, don’t let their innocent appearance fool you. Jumping spiders are incredibly impressive, and also skilled hunters in catching prey much larger than them. Keep reading to learn more about the adorable jumping spider and why people are so obsessed with them.

A jumping spider sits upside down on a leaf while looking at the camera.
Source: iStock
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What are jumping spiders?

Jumping spiders are part of the Salticidae family of spiders, which has over 6,380 species, making it the biggest spider family. They exist in wide variations of size and habitat, but they can be easily identified by their furry bodies, four pairs of eyes, and their tendency to jump towards prey, per Live Science.

Jumping spiders are known for their incredible eyesight. Not only are they able to see in high resolution, but they also have 360-degree vision. This is because jumping spiders have four pairs of eyes, split into secondary eyes and principal eyes, per Science News.

What’s more, a study revealed that jumping spiders can see more colors than humans. Specifically, the Habronattus species of jumping spider has a filter in their retina that changes the sensitivity of their photoreceptors to allow them to see a broader spectrum of colors, with more vibrancy than humans can see.

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Their senses aren’t the only impressive thing about them. Research published in The Royal Society Journal revealed that jumping spiders can count. Not exactly how humans count, but these spiders can assess the number of prey, which researchers compare to the intelligence of a 1-year-old human. According to Ars Technica, jumping spiders also have the capacity to play games, make plans, and assess risk.

Some jumping spiders are incredibly cute.

Unlike other spider species, jumping spiders are loved dearly for their cuteness. Maybe it’s because of their huge eyes and furry bodies, or the silly little mating dances they are caught doing. According to Rove Pest Control, it could be because of their “teddy bear characteristics” that some people find the jumping spider to be so cute.

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Like this one dancing to the YMCA. According to Rove Pest Control, you can find jumping spiders dancing when they are looking for a mate, it's how they impress each other.

And this one receiving furry pets. Who wouldn't want to pet that little face?

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And also this cutie.

Would you trust a jumping spider to help you cook mac and cheese?

What does a jumping spider eat?

According to Discovery Magazine, despite their innocent faces, jumping spiders are unforgiving hunters. They feast mainly on smaller insects and spiders, with some nectar here and there. They have even been known to hunt down small lizards and even frogs.

Unlike some other spiders, jumping spiders do not catch their prey by trapping them in their web. They instead prefer to catch their prey by stalking them before performing a massive jump to attack.

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