A new species for me — this tiny dude (females are light brown) was off the marked path and I was unable to get closer, but he was at least kind enough to sit and stare at me long enough for me to get some photos. This is a sylvan jumping spider.
Alas, both Colonus sylvanus and the genus Colonus are tiny, stub articles on Wikipedia. These spiders appear to live in the eastern United States, may or may not live around trees (my individual was found in a forested area in Florida), and reproduce in late spring or summer. They are reasonably sized for a jumping spider, about 7mm or less. Aaaaaand that’s what I’ve got.
I understand that, with something like 5.5 million species of insects around, not every one is going to be thoroughly studied, but it’s still disappointing to find a beautiful, vibrant spider like this and see that we kind of gave up at “it’s a spider”.
I found a female! Look at that amazing “hat”!
Another female. I love the depth of color on that “hat”, and how it matches the eyes (and maybe camouflages them?).
Aaaand another male, because oh my god that “moustache”: