Macro Photos Capture the Dazzling “Mirror Spider” with Its Changing Mosaic of Reflective Panels

For the past several years, Nicky Bay has carefully observed the dazzlingly odd-looking arthropod known as the “mirror spider” (scientifically: “Thwaitesia argentiopunctata”). The Singapore-based photographer has concentrated his macro lens on this small creature whose midsection is cloaked in silvery, mosaic-like panels that reflect light. From certain angles, it looks like it’s wearing fabulous, tiny sequins.

Thanks to Bay’s continued documentation, he has noticed that their appearance changes depending on the environmental circumstances. “The ‘silver-plates’ on the abdomen seem to shrink when the spider is agitated (or perhaps threatened),” he writes, “revealing the actual abdomen.” Under normal conditions, however, these same panels expand and become “an almost uniform reflective surface.”

Bay continues to update the blog post about mirror spiders that he began in 2013. In addition to this insect, he also captures a myriad of other fascinating bugs that he shares via Flickr.

Nicky Bay: Website | Flickr | Facebook
via [Colossal]

Sara Barnes

Sara Barnes is a Staff Editor at My Modern Met, Manager of My Modern Met Store, and co-host of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. As an illustrator and writer living in Seattle, she chronicles illustration, embroidery, and beyond through her blog Brown Paper Bag and Instagram @brwnpaperbag. She wrote a book about embroidery artist Sarah K. Benning titled 'Embroidered Life' that was published by Chronicle Books in 2019. Sara is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art. She earned her BFA in Illustration in 2008 and MFA in Illustration Practice in 2013.
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