The Daddy-long-legs spider in 3D by Wim van Egmond

To be able to show details like this you need to make a prepared slide of a spider or from its body parts. For this image I used 'clove oil' You have to be very patient because it takes months before the chitin becomes transparent. But what makes oil of cloves so special is it keeps most of the internal organs intact. The image clearly shows the muscles. These show up very colourfully when observed through a microscope with crossed Polaroid filters.

Clove oil also dehydrates the specimen so it can be mounted almost directly in Canada balsam. Before mounting the specimen it should be cleaned from oil residue with a few changes of xylene. The disadvantage of clove oil is that it doesn't soften the chitin. So you get thick slides but these are excellent for 3D microscopy.

Before mating the male spider deposits some sperm on a little web and then sucks it into a special cavity within the pedipalp. The palp can then be used for mating.




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More stereoscopic spiders can be found in the article The Zebra-spider in 3D
Many more 3D images can be found via Wim's HOME PAGE

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