Spiders of Australia

This site aim is to show the common spiders of Australia by means of color photos and some informative text.

All the pages together contain over 1200 spider pictures with 520 species in 169 genera that were photographed in Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, Northern-Territory and Western Australia.

Pictures of spiders from NW-Europe and several links to venomous spiders and much more information can be found on the spider site of European spiders.
This page is the main entry to more informative texts about spiders and their behaviour.

Spiders (class Arachnida) are eight-legged creatures belonging to a group (phylum) called Arthropoda that are different from insects (class Hexapoda) on several easy to see characteristics. They have no antennae, their eyes are like ours and not segmented, and they have four pairs of legs.
More general spider information can be found on these pages: Spider information.

 

Green jumping spider Mopsus mormom

Australian animals are made very dangerous by documentaries featuring sharks, box yellyfishes, crocodiles, snakes and spiders in which they kill ferociously other creatures.
Sometimes they are caught by fearless hunters in four-wheel drives or +2000 hp boats. It is true, bites of crocodiles, sharks and black mambas are to be avoided.
It is also suggested that bites of spiders will almost kill you instantly or can cause the affected limb falling off by ulceration and necrotic lesions. Luckily for us that is not true. Two spiders should be avoided, the Sydney Funnel-web (Atrax robustus) and the Redback (Latrodectus hasselti) because their bites can be painful for some days.
Are those two to be worried about? Since 1956 nobody died from a Redback bite and since 1980 nobody from a Sydney Funnel-web bite, mainly because of the development of an antivenom. A recent study by Isbister and Gray showed that the White-tail (Lampona species) spider bite is most probably harmless.
A review of the toxicity of several Australian spiders can be read here.
But if in doubt, leave the spider where it is and walk away. And, a bee sting is often more painful than most spider bites. And if bitten? look here.

   

Common backyard spiders.
Click on a picture to read more or for a thumbnail overview here for a small picture of all pictures on this site to identify your spider by photo.
The Australian spider identification location chart may be easy to indentify a spider by the location where you found it.

St Andrew's cross Leaf-curling Garden orbweaver Golder orbweaver Netcasting
Missulena occatoria
Tent Long-jawed Spiny Mouse or primitive Daddy-longleg

Stick Lynx Flower Fishing Spitting
Redback Ant-mimicking Wolf Prowling Jumping
Huntsman Black house Slater-eating White-tailed Sydney funnelweb
Spotted ground Wasp mimicking Sac Mouse Jumping


Links to the pages of families of Australian spiders

Amaurobiidae, Desidae, Dictynidae & Oecobiidae, lace web spiders
Araneidae, orb-weavers
Araneidae, nephila or golden orb web spiders
Araneidae, tent-web spiders
Clubionidae, Corrinidae & Gnaphosidae, sac spiders
Deinopidae, net-casting or ogre-faced spiders
Dysderidae, slater eating spiders
Heteropodidae, huntsman spiders
Hersiliidae, two-tailed spiders
Lamponidae, white-tailed spiders
Linyphiidae, lattice web spiders
Lycosidae, wolf spiders
Mygalomorphae or primitive spiders
Nicodamidae, red and black spiders
Oxyopidae, lynx spiders
Philodromidae, small huntsman spiders
Pisauridae, nursery web or fishing spiders
Miturgidae, prowling spiders
Pholcidae, daddy longlegs
Salticidae, jumping spiders
Scytodidae, spitting spiders
Stiphididae, lattice web spiders
Tetragnathidae, long jawed spiders
Theridiidae, comb-footed spiders, (Red back)
Trochanteriidae, flat spiders
Thomisidae, crab spiders
Uloboridae, orb-web cribellate spiders
Zodariidae, burrow-making spiders
Zoridae, wandering spiders

Common spider information

Spider information
Australian spider identification location chart
The demystification of the toxity of spiders
The anatomy of a spider
The spinnerets and the properties of silk
The construction of a wheel web
High resolution detail of the fangs of a spider
A perfect spider and bird watchers camping site in Queensland
The Australian Arachnology society
To the spider page of European spiders < --More links at the bottom of this page

 Literature

  1. Australian spiders in colour, R. Mascord, 1970, SBN 589 07065 7
  2. A guide to Australian spiders, Densy Clyne, 1969, SBN 17 004723 8
  3. Australian spiders, Keith C. McKeown, 1952
  4. Spider watch, B. Brunet, 1996, ISBN 0 7301 0486 9
  5. The silken web, B. Brunet, 1994, ISBN 0 7301 0401 X
  6. First field guide to Australian insects and spiders, S. Parish, 1997, ISBN 1 875932 55 0
  7. Amazing facts about Australian insects and spiders, S. Parish, 1997, ISBN 1 875932 35 6
  8. Spiders, Barbara York Main, 1976, ISBN 0 00 2165576 7
  9. Spiders of Australia, Trevor J. Hawkeswood, 2003, ISBN 9 54 642192 8
 
Checklist of Australian spiders from the Australian Arachnological Society

Australian spider sites

Australasian Arachnological Society
Australian spider photostream from Volker Framenau
Arachnids of Robert Whyte
Brisbane spider field guide
Steve's Australian spider pics
Brisbane Spiders by Peter Chew
The Find-a-spider Guide
The Australian spider page from Glenda Crew
Australian museum online
Queensland museum
Western Australian museum
Victorian spiders
Wolf spiders of Australia
Atlas of living Australia

To the spider page of European spiders < --More links at the bottom of this page

 


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Acknowledgements

Ed Nieuwenhuys, 4 June 2013
Copyright ã 1996-2013