Family - Pisauridae
Genus - Dolomedes
Fen Raft Spiders or Fishing Spiders are protected by Law.
Only recordings are from Norfolk and Suffolk Fens and just one
site in East Sussex. This site is managed by the Sussex Wildlife Trust,
who were very kind to grant me a permit to visit this site to photograph
Dolomedes Plantarius. Many thanks to Alice Parfitt, Reserves Officer
for Pevensey Marshes for granting the permit and for the map of where
to find thriving Dolomedes ditches.
I found eleven of them altogether. I feel honoured and privileged to
have done so.
Six of the eleven, which I photographed, are featured here.
I nearly fell in a few times and pulled various muscles to get some
of these shots! Difficult terrain but a truly unique habitat.
Lying in wait for prey.
These Spiders sit with their front legs resting on the
surface of water. They catch insects, tadpoles and even
small fish. They can also run across water to catch prey.
They are able to hide underwater for nearly an hour, if threatened,
by climbing down reeds and other aquatic plants.
I found these two before I'd even entered the Reserve!
higher, drier habitats and can be found in trees and bushes.
Sussex Wildlife Nature Reserve