The Measured Jumps of a Regal Jumping Spider

How much jumping would a jumping spider jump if a bunch of scientists made her keep jumping? One answer to that, involving one spider—a regal jumping spider—appears in this study, and in an accompanying video:

Energy and Time Optimal Trajectories in Exploratory Jumps of the Spider Phidippus regius,” Mostafa R.A. Nabawy, Girupakaran Sivalingam, Russell J. Garwood, William J. Crowther, and William I. Sellers, Scientific Reports, vol. 8, no. 7142, 2018. The authors, at the University of Manchester, report:

“One spider was inclined to jump within the experimental apparatus; the other three were unwilling to jump. All jumps were collected within a week. Body mass was monitored on daily basis and confirmed as approximately constant. We did not use prey as a bait item as this would mean one jump per week based on the observed diet of the spider. Instead, the spider was manually transported between the take-off and landing platforms until it became familiar with the challenge.”

The university wrote a background essay about the the spider’s adventure.

(Thanks to Marc Andelman for bringing this to our attention.)