- filtered for Bosnia/Herzegowina
Images and Species Descriptions
Text and photographs © 2011 Jørgen Lissner
The Spiders of Europe and Greenland
Family: Araneidae (Typical Orb Weavers)
Biology: The Araneidae is the world’s third largest spider family with more than 2850 species described in more than 165 genera. They range in size from small to large (2-30 mm body size). The species occupy a wide range of habitats and are found in terrestrial ecosystems all over the world with the exception of some high arctic areas, islands and archipelagos. Most species build an orb web with sticky spiral threads but some genera in the tropics have reduced or abandoned web building altogether. The webs are built in the herb layer, in or between bushes and trees and on buildings and possibly in many other places. Some species stay in the hub of the web sometimes camouflaged by a stabilimentum. Other species use a retreat as a hiding place or stay outside the web, in both cases holding a signal thread to detect when prey become tangled in the web. When males become adult they leave their web in search of females. Great care is taken when approaching the female web so the usually larger female does not eat the male. I many species courtship is undertaken by plucking and jerking the female web to suppress predatory behaviour of the female and to have her express mating behaviour instead.
Characters of family: The araneids belong to the group of ecribellate spider families having 8 eyes and 3 tarsal claws. The eyes are arranged in 2 rows of 4 with the lateral eyes widely separated from the medial eyes. The carapace is often flat with a distinct head region. The chelicers are strong having a lateral condyle (boss at base of chelicer). Labium is wider than long and rebordered (swollen at anterior edge). Maxilla (basal part of palp used for chewing prey) are widest anteriorly. Legs with 3 claws and often furnished with strong spines and trichobothria on all segments except tarsi. Often legs are clearly annulated. The abdomen is usually globose and nearly always with species-specific often bright colour patterns. The abdomens of some species are round-shouldered while others have humps, the latter species often referred to as angulate orb weavers. Some tropical species have large outgrows on the abdomen. A colulus (midline appendage or tubercle) is present in front of the anterior spinnerets. The tracheal spiracle is situated close to spinnerets. Araneids belong to the entelegyne group of spiders often having large and complex epigynes sometimes with a large flexible scapus (finger-, tongue-, or lip-like projection arising in the midline of the epigyne). The male palp is complex.
Genus: Agalenatea Archer, 1951
Agalenatea redii (Scopoli, 1763)
Range: Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia/Herzegowina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France (Corsica), France (Mainland), Germany, Great Britain (Channel Islands), Great Britain (Mainland), Great Britain (Northern Ireland), Greece (Crete), Greece (Dodecanese Islands), Greece (Mainland), Greece (North Aegean Islands), Hungary, Ireland, Italy (Mainland), Italy (Sardinia), Italy (Sicily), Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Macedonia, Malta, Netherlands, Norway (Mainland), Poland, Portugal (Azores), Portugal (Madeira), Portugal (Mainland), Romania, Russia (Central European), Russia (Eastern European), Russia (Kaliningrad Region), Russia (NW. European), Slovakia, Slovenia?, Spain (Canary Islands), Spain (Mainland), Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, Yugoslavia (van Helsdingen 2009.1). Global range: Palearctic (Platnick 10.0).
Juvenile.
Juvenile.
Female.
Male.
Female.
Female with triangular brown patch on abdomen.
Female with greenish abdominal markings.
Male palp.
Male.
Female abdominal markings.
Genus: Araneus Clerck, 1757 - Angulate and round-shouldered orb weavers
Biology: The species produce fairly large almost vertical orb webs with about 18-30 radii and with the retreat placed higher than the web among leaves, under bark, on twigs, in lichens and on buildings (Locket & Millidge 1953, Almquist 2005).
Characters of genus: Small to large large spiders ranging from 2.5 mm to at least 25 mm body length. Posterior medial eyes slightly larger than the rest and separated by one diameter from each other. Anterior medials separated by 2-3 diameters. Height of clypeus ca. 1.5 diameter of one anterior medial eye. Some species have well-developed shoulder humps while other are round-shouldered or possess traces of humps such as Araneus diadematus. There is some sexual dimorphism with males smaller and much slimmer than females, especially gravid ones. Epigyne with large scape originating from base of epigyne. Male palp complex, the shape of embolus and terminal apophysis being the most important characters for separating the species (Almquist 2005).
Araneus circe (Audouin, 1826)
Range: Austria, Bosnia/Herzegowina, Bulgaria, Croatia, France (Mainland), Germany, Greece (Cyclades), Greece (Dodecanese Islands), Greece (Mainland), Greece (North Aegean Islands), Hungary, Italy (Mainland), Italy (Sicily), Liechtenstein, Macedonia, Romania, Russia (Central European), Russia (Eastern European), Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain (Mainland), Switzerland, Ukraine, Yugoslavia (van Helsdingen 2009.1). Global range: Palearctic (Platnick 10.0).
Female.
Female abdominal markings.
Female.
Male, note thorn-like outgrowths on coxa II and apically on tibia II (the latter is just visible near lower edge of image).
Male.
Male abdominal markings.
Male.
Male palp and thorn-like outgrowth on coxa II.
Araneus diadematus Clerck, 1757 - Cross orb weaver
Description: Angulate orb weaver with elongate abdomen widest at the position of the rather faint shoulder humps anterior to the middle. The general colour varies from pale yellow to nearly black with most specimens reddish or brownish. The carapace is yellowish brown and varies less in colour, often with dark median and lateral bands and covered with long white hairs, however less so at edges. Head large, protruding. Chelicerae and sternum dark brown. Folium is not always distinct. Usually there is a distinct cruciform marking on the abdominal dorsum consisting of a longitudinal row of white dots and a pair of lateral dots situated in the middle of the anterior half. Legs yellowish brown annulated with dark brown. The legs are provided with numerous strong spines. Male tibia II with eight pairs of short, thick spines. Size: Female 9-14 mm; male 4-9 mm. Habitat: Widespread and common in most of Europe. Range: Andorra, Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Bosnia/Herzegowina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Faroe Islands (introduced), Finland, France (Corsica), France (Mainland), Germany, Great Britain (Channel Islands), Great Britain (Mainland), Great Britain (Northern Ireland), Greece (Crete), Greece (Dodecanese Islands), Greece (Mainland), Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy (Mainland), Italy (Sardinia), Italy (Sicily), Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Netherlands, Norway (Mainland), Poland, Portugal (Mainland), Romania, Russia (Central European), Russia (Eastern European), Russia (Kaliningrad Region), Russia (Northern European), Russia (NW. European), Russia (Southern European), Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain (Mainland), Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, Yugoslavia (van Helsdingen 2009.1). Global range: Holarctic (Platnick 10.0).
Male.
Subadult female.
Juvenile.
Juvenile.
Juvenile.
Juvenile.
Subadult female.
Subadult female, abdominal markings.
Female.
Female abdominal markings.
Female.
Female.
Female.
Female.
Female.
Female.
Female.
Female.
Female.
Female.
Male.
Male.
Male.
Genus: Hypsosinga Ausserer, 1871
Biology: Often shiny species.
Characters of genus: The legs are short with combined length of patella and tibia I hardly as long as carapace. Posterior medial eyes larger than the other eyes.
Hypsosinga albovittata (Westring, 1851)
Range: Austria, Belgium, Bosnia/Herzegowina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France (Corsica), France (Mainland), Germany, Great Britain (Mainland), Greece (Cyclades), Greece (Mainland), Hungary, Ireland, Italy (Mainland), Italy (Sardinia), Italy (Sicily), Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Netherlands, Norway (Mainland), Poland, Portugal (Mainland), Romania, Russia (Central European), Russia (Eastern European), Russia (Kaliningrad Region), Russia (Northern European), Russia (NW. European), Russia (Southern European), Slovakia, Slovenia?, Spain (Canary Islands), Spain (Mainland), Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, Yugoslavia (van Helsdingen 2009.1). Global range: Europe, North Africa, Russia, Ukraine (Platnick 10.0).
Subadult male.
Female.
Female.
Female.
Female.
Male.
Male.
Male.
Male.
Male.
Genus: Zygiella F. O. P.-Cambridge, 1902
Biology: Orbweavers construcing webs nearly always with missing sector in upper part with the signal thread in missing sector between hub and retreat.
Characters of genus: Anterior row of eyes recurv, posterior slightly procurved. Median ocular trapezium forms a square. Distance between posterior medians only slightly smaller than the distance to adjacent laterals. Clypeus less than diameter of one anterior medial eye. Dorsum of abdomen usually with a dark bordered folium. Venter and sternum with dark bands.
Zygiella keyserlingi (Ausserer, 1871)
Range: Bosnia/Herzegowina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Greece (Dodecanese Islands), Greece (Mainland), Italy (Mainland), Macedonia, Portugal (Mainland), Slovenia?, Ukraine, Yugoslavia (van Helsdingen 2009.1). Global range: Southern Europe (Platnick 10.0).