Harvestmen (Order Opiliones)

The term "Opilio" is Latin, meaning "shepherd", an allusion to the long stilt-legs shepherds once wore when attempting to count their flocks. Harvestmen are typically characterized by very long legs (though the Order does contain exceptions to this criterion), and they have one pair of eyes at the front of the cephalothorax. They contrast with spiders by lacking a slender waist between cephalotherax and abdomen, and unlike other arachnids, the males have a penis for directly transferring sperm.

This Harvestman was found inside an ill-sealed storage container in Lower Hot Springs Canyon. The two eyes on this specimen appear to be raised on short stalks. (Click on each image to enlarge it.)



We found this one below inside a stack of concrete blocks in Lower Hot Springs Canyon during April of 2007.


Again, the eyes appear to be raised on stalks here. Our view of the head of this Harvestman was even poorer than that in the first image; however, we did get a fairly good view of the rear portions, as seen in these images below: (Click on each image to enlarge it.)


A suitable popular name for this specimen might be "Quiburis Harvestman", since its color patterns, especially as seen on the right-hand enlargement, look very similar to the strata of this geological Formation.