On December 3, 2010, Clynt Ridgell, reporter for the Pacific News Center, brought me a specimen of a spider which he suspected may have been accidentally imported with a Christmas tree he just bought.
I identified this spider as Opadometa fastigata (syn. Leucauge fastigata; Family Tetragnathidae) based on a description in Yoshida 2009. This spider is a tropical species recorded from the Philippines, Indonesia, India, Sulawesi. It was first reported from Taiwan in 2009 from a specimen collected in 1993.
It is improbable that this spider arrived with Christmas trees which are typically shipped to Guam from the American Northwest. I am unaware of any previous record of Opadometa fastigata collected on Guam, however it may have been here for years. Despite an abundance of spiders on Guam, and new species continually arriving, a comprehensive taxonomic checklist of these animals is not available.
The specimen was placed in the University of Guam insect collection (Accession Number 4cf9c1fdc65d8).
- , “The spider genus Leucauge (Araneae: Tetragnathidae) from Taiwan”, Acta Arachnologica, vol. 58, no. 1, pp. 11-18, 2009.