This bizarre looking “Bunny Harvestman” from the South American rainforest looks like a mad scientist grafted a rabbit's head onto an octet of spindly spider legs.
Metagryne bicolumnata, to give it its official scientific name, was beautifully photographed on July 11th of 2017 by Flickr member Andreas Kay (Ecuador Megadiverso).
Though members of the Arachnid class, harvestmen (also known as “daddy longlegs”) are not spiders though they do have eight legs. We're sure that factoid makes you feel better, assuming you haven't already run off screaming.
This particular “Bunny Harvestman”, as Kay describes it, has a dark body with a pair of eye spots situated on its back midway between its true eyes and the curious “bunny ears” rising up from the edge of its abdomen.
It may be that the eye spots and ear-like protuberances are meant to fool predators into thinking the creature is larger than it really is – and you probably DON'T want to see what preys on this creepy critter.
Kay snapped this bizarre creature while exploring the Amazon rainforest of eastern Ecuador. It was first described in 1959 by German arachnid specialist Carl Friedrich Roewer.
As weird as it appears, it may not be the oddest harvestman you'll ever see. Science currently recognizes roughly 6,500 species in the order Opiliones but the actual total may exceed 10,000... lots of nightmare fuel to come!