Myth: You can always tell a spider because it has eight legs.
You are watching: Why do spiders have 8 legs
Fact: Not exactly. Scorpions, harvestmen, ticks, and in fact all arachnids—not just spiders—have four pairs of legs (see illustrations). Insects have three pairs. Also, notice that I said "four pairs" instead of "eight." The number of leg pairs (one pair per leg-bearing segment) is more significant than individual legs, which can be lost.
"Everything that "everybody knows" about spiders is wrong!" —Rod Crawford sets the record straight with Spider Myths.
A spider, Missulena occatoria (Australia).
A whipscorpion, Abaliella dicranotarsalis.
A scorpion, Charmus indicus (India).
A pseudoscorpion, Chelifer tuberculatus (Algeria).
A harvestman, Phalangium opilio (worldwide).
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4300 15th Ave NE,Seattle, WA, United States
Land Acknowledgement: The Burke Museum stands on the lands of the Coast Salish Peoples, whose ancestors resided here since time immemorial. Many Indigenous peoples thrive in this place—alive and strong.
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