This little guy have been identified as a Maratus Vespertilio. This species also commonly known as the “Bat Peacock Spider” is widely distributed and is found in drier habitats throughout Australia.  The male has hidden flaps that he displays during his courtship dance, and prolonged ritual contests, something not seen in any other Maratus.

 

You will notice this particular little guy (above) has lost most of his hair and is looking a bit like a bolding old man.  Apparently this can be because of several reasons which may include malnutrition or even old age.  No one can really be sure.

Below are some pictures of more healthy looking Vespertilios…

What do we know about Vespertilio?

Not that much really.  From personal experience we have learned that they seem to have “seasons” where they come out on full display looking for love and then a couple of weeks later, they are nowhere to be found!  They also seem to have short live spans and the males die off sooner than the females.  We are no experts however and luckily there are people out there working on learning more about these great little creatures.

Scientist Dr. Jurgen Otto, naturlist David Knowles and US-based spider expert Dr. David Hill are working on getting all the different species identified and described.

At the moment there is really very little known about any of the peacock species and still a lot to be discovered out there.

Check out this  video by Dr Jurgen Otto showing the Maratus Vespertilio and his colourful hidden flaps.