What is an arachnid?

Even though animals like spiders and scorpions tend to be categorized as “bugs” it’s important to know that there are many complex differences that separate these arachnids from insects.


  • Are invertebrates (they have no backbone)
  • Have eight legs (though some may have additional appendages)
  • Body is made up for two segments the cephalothorax and the abdomen
  • Most are carnivorous

Even though Arachnid comes from the Greek word for ‘Spider’, it’s not just spiders that make up this diverse family. Along with spiders, arachnids include

  • Ticks
  • Scorpions
  • Amblygi (tailless whip scorpion)
  • Daddy Long-legs

There are over 3,000 different kinds of spiders in the world and over 35,000 known arachnids. Most scientists even think there are ones that haven’t been discovered yet!

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