Arachnids of North Carolina
Scientific Name: Common Name: Family (Alpha):
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Sole representative of Cosmetidae in NC
NC Records

Vonones sayi (Simon, 1879) - No Common Name

Order: OPILIONESSuborder: LaniatoresSuperfamily: TravunioideaFamily: Cosmetidae                                                                                 
Comments: Vonones sayi is one of two species in this genus that occur in North America north of Mexico and the only one currently recognized as occurring in North Carolina (Kury, 2003)
Species Comment: Brimley (1938) referred to specimens collected in North Carolina as Libitiodes ornata, reflecting past confusion as to which names (ornata or sayi) applied to the species found widely in the East and Midwest(see discussion in Kury , 2003). Vonones ornatus, as now defined however, is restricted to the Gulf Coast and Florida.
Online Description/Photos: BugGuide (with many photographs labeled as ornatus but probably representing sayi based on range) Images, iNaturalist, Wikipedia, GBIFTechnical Description: Weed (1893)
Comments: A moderately small Armored Harvestman, with a flattened body and somewhat bowed legs, particularly the posterior pair. The body color is fuscous to ferruginous brown. Narrow yellow or whitish lines are variably present, with a Y-shaped mark located on the cephalothorax behind the eye eminence, and a transverse line located at the rear margin of the abominal scutum (Weed, 1893). Additional transerse line segments may occur between the pair of tubercles on the scutum of the abdomen (form albolineata, as described by Weed, who considered it to be a separate species). Size, color, and pattern appear to be very similar to those of V. ornatus, but Weed describes the lines as a brighter canary yellow.
Total Length: 6 mm (Weed, 1893)Adult ID: identifiable by photo
Structural Features: The two pairs of tubercles on the abdomen are low and inconspicuous in V. sayi, whereas the posterior pair are prominent in V. ornata, and about four to five times larger than the anterior pair (Weed, 1893; see also Banks, 1893, and Cokendolpher and Jones, 1991).
Distribution in North Carolina
Comments: This species will probably be found across the Piedmont and Coastal Plain. Its presence in the mountains needs to be investigated.
County Map: Clicking on a county returns the records for the species in that county.
Adult phenology:
 High Mountains (HM) ≥ 4,000 ft.
 Low Mountains (LM) < 4,000 ft.
 Piedmont (Pd)
 Coastal Plain (CP)

Click on graph to enlarge
Habitats and Life History
Habitats: Found under logs and rocks on the ground and under the bark of standing snags. In the Piedmont, observations come primarily from wet to mesic hardwood forests.
Observation Methods: This species may be found nearly year-round by searching under logs and boards.
Status in North Carolina
Natural Heritage Program Status:
Natural Heritage Program Ranks: [GNR] [S3S5]
State Protection: Arachnids are not protected under state law, although permits are needed to collect them in State Parks and other public and private nature preserves
Comments: While we still have relatively few records for this species, it appears to be associated with fairly widespread habitats. More information needs to be obtained about its overall distribution, population sizes, and habitat associations before its conservation status can be accurately determined.

Photo Gallery for Vonones sayi

Recorded by: Carol Tingley
Durham Co.
Recorded by: Nathan Vaughan
Person Co.
Recorded by: Elizabeth Doran Washburn
Wake Co.
Comment: Found 2 but only caught 1 on photo, the other crawled away. They were underneath shells we have laying in the dirt in our yard as decoration
Recorded by: FKW, SBW
Camden Co.
Comment: DISW - Near East Bank Control House
Recorded by: Steve Hall
Orange Co.
Recorded by: Steve Hall
Orange Co.
Recorded by: Steve Hall
Orange Co.
Recorded by: Steve Hall
Orange Co.