The spider moves faster by somersaulting than it would if it were running. There is less friction to contend with and the vaulting motion creates its own momentum.
The spider is such a good athlete that it can do backsprings both up and down tall sand dunes.
Eight-Eyed Spiders Watch Videos and People
As you might imagine, all of this can be exhausting and uses up a lot of energy, so the spiders can keel over if they have to do a somersault escape anywhere between 5 and 10 times a day.
Even with that limitation, scientist Ingo Rechenberg of the Technical University of Berlin was so impressed by the spider's gymnastics that he built a tiny robot, called The Tabbot, mimicking the agile spider's moves. "Tabacha" means "spider" in the Berber language.
"This robot may be employed in agriculture, on the ocean floor or even on Mars," Rechenberg said.
Jäger hopes to find more unique species in future. As he said, "It is our goal to record and preserve the diversity of all life on our planet."
Photo: Cebrennus rechenbergi in motion. Credit: Ingo Rechenberg