If you ever find yourself trying to explain what a Gray Wall Jumping Spider is to people new to the arachnid niche, you’ll quickly see why they have such a bad rap.
I’d imagine the common name doesn’t really help much either. If you are on the side of seeing these gentle jumpers as a companion, this guide is for you!
Native to parts of the Mediterranean and North African regions, Menemerus bivittatus is an intelligent and eye-catching creature.
In this article, we’ll discuss everything needed to provide the best possible care for your pet jumping spider.
|Common Name||Gray Wall Jumping Spider|
|Scientific Name||Menemerus bivittatus|
|Lifespan||1 to 2 Years|
|Adult Size||up to 10mm|
|Breeding Type||Egg Layer|
|Minimum Tank Size||5-10 Gallons|
What Are Gray Wall Jumping Spiders?
Gray Wall Jumping Spiders, also scientifically known as Menemerus bivittatus, is a species of spider found in the family Salticidae.
The common name of the Gray Wall Jumping Spider comes from the characteristic grey coloration on the dorsal side of their abdomen that is enhanced by two vertical black stripes.
They are native to warmer climates such as the Mediterranean region and parts of Northern Africa.
What Do Gray Wall Jumping Spiders Look Like?
Menemerus bivittatus is a bright and colorful arachnid, making it one of the most enjoyable spiders to watch.
These small but bold creatures reach about a centimeter in length and have a unique color pattern to them.
The carapace, or upper body, of the Gray Wall Jumper, is gray, while its abdomen is usually adorned with a black and tan pattern.
The legs are usually yellow, with orange and black stripes at the ends.
M. bivittatus is equipped with black-and-white eyes which they use to hunt down their prey.
They also have sturdy but flexible legs that allow them to jump as well as crawl, giving them the second half of their common name.
They have a small spinneret, or silk-spinning organ, which comes in handy when they build their webs and retreats.
Their fangs and claws, like those of all spiders, are the most impressive of their features and what truly makes them intimidating.
Benefits Of Using Gray Wall Jumping Spiders
Gray Wall Jumping Spiders are a popular choice for vivariums, as they are easy to maintain, are visually striking creatures, and thrive in a wide range of conditions.
These Jumping Spiders can quickly become used to their captor’s presence, making them ideal companions as pets.
Furthermore, their charisma and bold arachnid behavior make them a suitable choice for observation in captive conditions.
They are also great terrarium predators, can be observed engaging with other cohabiting species, and can add a unique element to any tank.
Gray Wall Jumping Spider Facts
Gray Wall Jumping Spiders are an intelligent and fascinating species of arachnid native to the Mediterranean and North African regions.
They are omnivorous and have a lifespan of a few years, breeding sexually.
The spiders have a mild temperament and usually shy away from human contact.
Menemerus bivittatus is native to parts of the Mediterranean and North African regions.
They generally avoid wet areas and can be found living in drier regions such as steppes, deserts, and even gravel paths and roads.
In the wild, these jumping spiders typically inhabit walls, boulders, and under rocks in search of prey, such as flies and other small insects.
Gray Wall Jumpers are usually found living in dry and cold climates, particularly in areas that can be over 35°F for their coldest winters.
They tend to hibernate during the colder months and become active again in the warmer weather.
It’s also important to note that these spiders can adapt to different climates, so as long as their enclosure mimics the conditions of their natural habitat as best as possible, they should be fine.
Despite their small size, Gray Wall Jumping Spiders can be quite bold and inquisitive.
They may even come out of their enclosure and explore the area around it if they sense a new threat.
However, they are non-aggressive and generally harm-free, making them good pets for beginners and experienced keepers alike.
In their natural habitat, the Gray Wall Jumping Spider is primarily a predator, feeding on a variety of insects and arachnids.
In most cases, they wait patiently in their web for unsuspecting prey to pass by before darting out and delivering a swift and precise bite.
This behavior is largely due to the fact that they don’t actively hunt.
They’ll feed on whatever prey they are able to catch and the amount and frequency of feeding will vary depending on the climate and season.
In the warmer months of spring and summer, these spiders can be quite voracious and may even hunt during the day.
During this time, they often target much larger prey as they are able to get a better grip on them due to their larger size.
However, in the colder months of fall and winter, they tend to be less active and feed far less.
Menemerus bivittatus is usually quite independent and not very sociable creatures when it comes to interacting with other spiders and even humans.
Humans, may tolerate gentle handling and make a pleasant pet, so long as introductions are done carefully and gradually.
Some may even demonstrate enough trust to let a human hand approach them in time but it is best not to handle the Gray Wall Jumper without the assistance of more experienced keepers.
In regards to other animals, M. bivittatus should not be housed with other species.
They may be territorial and even attack other spiders in their enclosure if housed together.
Even well-fed spiders may find other species of spiders to be potential threats or easy prey, so they shouldn’t ever really be housed with other species of spiders or invertebrates.
These spiders can make amazing and surprisingly entertaining pets when proper care is taken and they are given plenty of space to move around and explore.
As long as their environmental needs are met and they are not disturbed too often, your Gray Wall Jumping Spider is sure to keep you entranced for hours.
Properly kept, Gray Wall Jumping Spiders can live for a duration of 1-2 years, which is typical for most Salticidae species arachnids.
After mating, the female spider will lay up to 200 eggs in an egg sac for protection.
She will then guard the egg until the young emerge from their cocoon.
Once hatched, the young spiders will be independent and ready to start their life of hunting and exploring.
Since they are well-suited to life in captivity, young Menemerus bivittatus mature quickly when well-invested in by their keepers.
By their third or fourth molt and the spiders have reached adulthood, they will be ready to begin mating.
Gray Wall Jumping Spiders reach full maturity after about eight molts, and the cycle begins anew as they continue producing offspring.
Mating and reproduction in Menemerus bivittatus begin when the male locates a female and begins to court her.
Courtship involves a series of impressive displays, including dancing, calling, and tapping the female’s abdomen with pedipalps.
If the female is uninterested, she will flick away the male or attempt to flee.
If she is interested, the male will then grasp her pedipalps in his and move to her web, where he will inject sperm from his pedipalps into the female’s gonopore (located on her abdomen).
After mating, the female will lay eggs but may not leave the web.
Within a week of hatching, the young will leave the parental web, like their mother.
In the wild, female Gray Wall Jumping Spiders can produce several egg sacs in a single year, each with over a hundred eggs.
Where To Find Gray Wall Jumping Spiders
Gray Wall Jumping Spiders are fairly easy to find in the wild, mainly in the Mediterranean and North African regions.
They live on walls, rocks, and other flat surfaces, typically in crevices.
If you choose to try and find them in their natural environment, make sure to take all safety precautions, wear gloves, and never take more than you need.
Gray Wall Jumping Spiders may also be found in pet stores or by arachnid breeders.
Although they’re quite popular in the hobby, not all pet stores will carry them as they may not be readily available.
Arachnid breeders are a great way to find adult spiders and often allow buyers to pick the age and sex of the spider.
Whichever way you decide to go, make sure the spider is healthy and well-fed.
Alternatively, you can buy Gray Wall Jumpers online.
There are many reputable online dealers and breeders that are offering these spiders for sale.
Gray Wall Jumping Spider Care
Menemerus bivittatus require an enclosure with the proper temperature, humidity, and ventilation.
They should be fed a variety of live food and provided with clean, fresh water.
Breeding should be done in a separate enclosure and the spider should be monitored for common health issues.
Lastly, by observing their behavior, you can better understand the needs of your Gray Wall Jumping Spider.
The ideal tank or vivarium for the Jumping Spider should be between 5-10 gallons in size, with basic pH levels of 6.5 to 7.5, and moderate hardness for water.
The temperature should range between 65-84 degrees Fahrenheit with a relative humidity of about 60-80%, with a temperature gradient of warm to cool.
Any terrarium lighting should be indirect, natural, and kept dim at all times.
What Do Gray Wall Jumping Spiders Eat?
Feeding Menemerus bivittatus should be done no more than once every other day to prevent overfeeding, which can lead to health issues.
Gray Wall Jumping Spiders will typically feed on small insects, such as:
- Fruit flies
- Small crickets
- House flies
In the wild, they are also known to eat smaller spiders and other invertebrates.
To feed your spider, simply drop a few insects into the enclosure and make sure there is plenty of space for your spider to hunt.
As always, make sure to remove any uneaten prey items from the enclosure.
If you’re looking for a more detailed approach to feeding these critters, be sure to check out my ultimate DIY jumping spider food guide. I give a more in-depth explanation of the best foods and my favorite recipe.
Best Tankmates For Gray Wall Jumping Spiders
When selecting tankmates for a Gray Wall Jumping Spider, it is important to choose carefully.
While some spiders can be quite solitary creatures, a Gray Wall Jumping Spider can benefit from having specific types of tankmates.
Insects such as crickets and small flies are good companions due to their small size and the fact that they can act as food sources for the spider.
Other animals that have similar beneficial qualities to the Gray Wall Jumping Spider can also be kept as tankmates.
These animals are also relatively easy to feed since they mostly live off the land and can provide additional warmth to an enclosure.
Some Gray Wall Jumping Spiders may become territorial, so it is essential to ensure that there is enough space for the spider to feel secure and not overwhelmed by the other tankmates.
If a Gray Wall Jumping Spider feels threatened, it may lash out in defense, leading to potential injury or death of other animals.
Therefore, it is important to choose tankmates that are similar in size and temperament.
Caring for a Gray Wall Jumping Spider can be very rewarding and gratifying.
With the right information, dedication, and patience, you should have no problems providing the best possible care for Menemerus bivittatus.
After learning more about their enclosure requirements, feeding and nutrition, breeding and reproduction, health issues, and behaviors, you will be able to create the perfect environment for your beloved arachnid.
Frequently Asked Questions
Gray wall jumping spiders are native to Africa but have been introduced to various regions worldwide, including North and South America, Europe, and Asia, where they are commonly found in urban environments on walls and other vertical surfaces.
Menemerus Bivittatus is not considered to be a poisonous species of spider. It does have venom, however, which is used to paralyze and capture prey. The venom is not usually a threat to humans.
Gray wall jumping spiders (Menemerus bivittatus) have a bite that is generally not medically significant to humans, causing mild symptoms similar to a bee sting, but individual reactions may vary. It is advised to exercise caution and seek medical attention if necessary.