Thursday, February 14, 2008

United States (1999b)

Date of issue: October 1st, 1999
Name of issue: Insects & Spiders
Number of arachnid related stamps in issue: 4/20

This series has been "copied" by a 2002 issue from Marshall Islands. If you look carefully, every species shown on every stamps are the same and appear in the exact same order. Of course, the artwork is totally different.

Information about the animals is from the back of the stamp (see scan of the verso of the sheet).

Black widow (Latrodectus mactans)

This spider uses its highly poisonous venom to kill insect prey. It does at times bite humans in self-defence, but victims usually survive if properly treated. Despite popular belief, the female does not always eat the male after mating.

Michel #: 3192
Scott #: 3351a
Yvert #: 2963
order: Araneae
family: Theridiidae
Latrodectus mactans (Fabricius, 1775)

Yellow garden spider (Argiope aurantia)

The web of this spider is a familiar sight in meadows in the fall. Insects trapped in the web are quickly wrapped in silk by the spider. Occasionally the spider rejects and sets free distaceful insects.

Michel #: 3195
Scott #: 3351d
Yvert #: 2966
order: Araneae
family: Araneidae
Argiope aurantia Lucas, 1833

Spinybacked spider (Gasteracantha cancriformis)

Like most web-spinning spiders, the spinybacked spider sometimes takes down its web and builds a new one. As it dismantles the web, it ingests the old silk. By doing so, it salvages a valuable resource of protein.

Michel #: 3208
Scott #: 3351q
Yvert #: 2979
order: Araneae
family: Araneidae
Gasteracantha cancriformis (Linnaeus, 1758)

Jumping spider (Habronattus americanus)

A jumping spider hunts by sight. It punces upon insect prey by leaping from a distance. Prior to jumping, it uses its vision to get a precise fix on its target.

Michel #: 3211
Scott #: 3351t
Yvert #: 2982
order: Araneae
family: Salticidae
Habronattus americanus (Keyserling, 1885)

Full sheet:



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