Unearthing the Peacock Spider

Gwydir Ark is holding a special event on Monday September 4 at the Living Classroom where you can jump into the macro world with Peacock Spider expert and citizen scientist Stuart Harris.

Stuart is on an expedition hunting for new species of the now famous jumping spider genus, Maratus. People the world over have fallen in love with these tiny but charismatic Peacock Spiders.

The very colourful peacock spider

The very colourful peacock spider

In 2013 Stuart rediscovered a species now called Maratus Elephans (pictured) only two hours from Bingara at Chaffey Dam south of Tamworth. He is convinced there are undescribed species in our area.

Is there an as yet undiscovered Peacock Spider lurking in the leaf litter of your backyard? Come to The Living Classroom to learn how to search and identify them so that you can find out!

Anyone can be a citizen scientist. Stuart works at Questacon in Canberra as a science educator and in his spare time he participates in Bio Blitz’s surveying for fauna as well as independently searching for new Peacock Spiders.

He has discovered seven species of Peacock Spider: three new species described, one new genus described and three co-discoveries awaiting description.

Join Gwydir Ark and Stuart for a slideshow presentation on Peacock Spiders, a hunting expedition in the grounds of The Living Classroom searching for Peacock Spiders, then watch Stuart’s journey from council worker to citizen scientist in a half hour documentary of Stuart’s story called ‘Maratus’.

This special event is on Monday September 4 at 4pm at The Living Classroom. It is expected to conclude at around 7pm.

Bookings are essential as places are limited and a gold coin donation is requested. Please book by email to gwydir.ark@gmail.com or phone Shelley McDouall on 6724 2002.




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