Sunday, 9 November 2014

Dysdera crocata

Being called to the downstairs toilet to remove a spider, I found a species I hadn't seen before. Keying it through to family Dysderidae was very straightforward using the AIDGAP key to the families of British Families by Jones-Walters (1989), combining the six eyes with the long basal segment of the fangs (chelicerae).  The size of the male at 10 mm. and the detail of the palps led easily to Dysdera crocata.  It was difficult to photograph as I had to do a stack and it wouldn't always keep its legs still.  In addition it had to be taken through glass as I had given my word that it would not escape.  The image below was the best I could do.    

It will be released in the strawberry bed as its prey is predominantly woodlice and they are a bit of a problem there.

Those of you who are keen on identifying ground beetles may be interested that I have added a few more genus keys at  I would like to get these finished some time soon. 

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