I give you: a giant aggregation of Daddy Long Legs, also known as Opiliones. The coolest thing about this is that no one really knows WHY they form these aggregations.  Is it predator defense? Thermoregulation? Maximizing their smelly gland effects? A plot to totally creep us all out?

I smell a dissertation in this!

EDITED TO ADD: I don’t think I was clear enough that these actually aren’t spiders–they are in a separate group. They do, however, have a lot of very long legs, and provoke the sorts of reactions spiders do.  They don’t have venom or silk glands, and they don’t make webs.  They will eat just about anything they can grab.

Posted by Gwen Pearson

Writer. Nerd. Insect Evangelist. Have you heard the good news? BUGS!


  1. Okay, yeah, that’s a bit much. I’m cool with individual harmless arthropods. Once I’m outnumbered by 100 or so, I start having problems :s

  2. I would think that a predator could gorge itself on a gathering like that … unless it was completely creeped out.

  3. Normally I don’t care about spiders. My first and admittedly completely xenophobic reaction is “kill it with fire!!”

  4. What do we call an aggregation of opilionids? A haggle of harvestmen?

  5. Spiders have never bothered me. The idea of spiders working together has.

  6. I kind of like a Hassle of Harvestmen, Alex. Or, in this case, perhaps an OMFG of Opiliones.

    And I don’t think I was clear enough that these aren’t, technically, spiders–I added a bit more info on the taxonomy for everyone.

  7. To quote Bug Girl: OMFG! I think it wouldn’t be nearly so freaky (and I heart spiders and spider-like things) if the videographer hadn’t dislodged a hunk of harvestmen to fall pretty much ONTO the camera (eek!). Plus, I’m such a hands-off person re: wildlife I wouldn’t want to disturb them, but a benefit of that philosophy is, as I now see, exposure to fewer freak-tastic things. Yeesh!!!

  8. Wow, that brings back memories of girl scout camp. Sleeping on wooden platforms with canvas walls in central Texas… and the ceiling would pulsate if something disturbed the hundreds of ever-present daddy long legs above your head. We became rather used to them. :-)

  9. I found a similar mass in Jalisco earlier this year.
    masses of bugs (Daddy Long Legs)

  10. I think it should be used just like an ink blot test to reveal personality traits. Show the video to the person to be analyzed and judge their response.
    An empathetic person might say that they are all having a big group hug while an extremely horny person might say its a big bug orgy, etc.

  11. OMG Darrin! That’s probably what Shatner’s toupee looks like at night….

  12. I’m just glad they do what they do outside. My family would freak if they ran across that mass of wiggling legs somewhere in the house.

  13. I just watched this with a hip hop soundtrack, and somehow it really worked…

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