Slater spider Dysdera crocata, copyright Whitney Cranshaw.

Belongs within: Basalhaplogynae.

The Dysderidae is a western Palaearctic family of free-living spiders with large chelicerae, some of which have a predilection for hunting woodlice. One such species, the slater spider Dysdera crocata, has a global distribution in association with humans. Dysderids are free-wandering hunters at night, spending daylight hours in a silken retreat (Jocqué & Dippenaar-Schoeman 2007).

Characters (from Jocqué & Dippenaar-Schoeman 2007): Medium-sized; six eyes present in compact group near clypeal edge; chelicerae and fangs well-developed; sternum joined to carapace by intercoxal sclerites; legs with two or three tarsal claws; distinct pair of tracheal spiracles posterior to booklung slits; ecribellate; haplogyne.

    |--HarpacteaSL14 [HarpacteinaeJD-S07]
    |    |--H. extinctus Petrunkevitch 1950S93
    |    |--H. hombergi (Scopoli 1763)VPB11 [=Aranea hombergiiC01, Dysdera hombergiiC01]
    |    |--H. lepida (Koch 1838)SL14
    |    `--H. sadisticaW19
    `--Dysdera Latreille 1804PVD10 [DysderinaeJD-S07]
         |--*D. erythrina (Walckenaer 1802)C01, VPB11 [=Aranea erythrynaC01, Segestria (Dystera) erythrinaG20]
         |--D. angustata Lucas 1846E12
         |--D. cambridgiiP-C06
         |--D. corallina Risso 1826R26
         |--D. crocata Koch 1838PVD10 [incl. D. interritaS99, D. rubicundaS99]
         |--D. fasciata Risso 1826R26
         |--D. glabrata Menge 1854S93
         |--D. hippopodium Menge 1854S93
         |--D. hungaricaFF99
         |--D. lutea Risso 1826R26
         |--D. ninaii Canestrini 1868K55
         |--D. nubila Simon 1882K55
         |--D. scobiculata Menge 1854S93
         |--D. spinipes Lucas 1846E12
         |--D. tersa Koch & Berendt 1854S93
         `--D. westringi Pickard-Cambridge 1872PO08
Dysderidae incertae sedis:
  Stalagtia hercegovinensisPN02
    |--T. abdominalis Deeleman-Reinhold 1988PO08
    `--T. oxygnatha Simon 1882PO08
    |--H. ignavus Kraus 1955K55
    |--H. limbarae Kraus 1955K55
    `--H. teruelis Kraus 1955K55
  Dasumia subita Petrunkevitch 1940S93
  Thereola petiolata Koch & Berendt 1854S93
  Mistura perplexa Petrunkevitch 1971P92

*Type species of generic name indicated


[C01] Cambridge, F. O. P. 1901. A revision of the genera of the Araneae or spiders with reference to their type species. Annals and Magazine of Natural History, series 7, 7: 51–65.

[E12] Evenhuis, N. L. 2012. Publication and dating of the Exploration Scientifique de l’Algérie: Histoire Naturelle des Animaux Articulés (1846–1849) by Pierre Hippolyte Lucas. Zootaxa 3448: 1–61.

[FF99] Forster, R., & L. Forster. 1999. Spiders of New Zealand and their World-wide Kin. University of Otago Press: Dunedin (New Zealand).

[G20] Goldfuss, G. A. 1820. Handbuch der Naturgeschichte vol. 3. Handbuch der Zoologie pt 1. Johann Leonhard Schrag: Nürnberg.

[JD-S07] Jocqué, R., & A. S. Dippenaar-Schoeman. 2007. Spider Families of the World. Royal Museum for Central Africa: Tervuren (Belgium).

[K55] Kraus, O. 1955. Spinnen von Korsika, Sardinien und Elba (Arach., Araneae). Senckenbergiana Biologica 36: 371–394.

[PVD10] Paquin, P., C. J. Vink & N. Dupérré. 2010. Spiders of New Zealand: annotated family key and species list. Manaaki Whenua Press: Lincoln (New Zealand).

[P-C06] Pickard-Cambridge, O. 1906. The wild fauna and flora of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Arachnida. Bulletin of Miscellaneous Information, Additional Series 5: 53–65.

[PO08] Pluess, T., I. Opatovsky, E. Gavish-Regev, Y. Lubin & M. H. Schmidt. 2008. Spiders in wheat fields and semi-desert in the Negev (Israel). Journal of Arachnology 36 (2): 368–373.

[PN02] Poggi, R., G. Nonveiller, A. Colla, D. Pavićević & T. Rađa. 2001–2002. Thaumastocephalini, a new tribe of Pselaphinae for Thaumastocephalus folliculipalpus n. gen., n. sp., an interesting new troglobious species from central Dalmatia (Croatia) (Coleoptera, Staphylinidae, Pselaphinae). Annali del Museo Civico di Storia Naturale “Giacomo Doria” 94: 1–20.

[P92] Poinar, G. O., Jr. 1992. Life in Amber. Stanford University Press: Stanford.

[R26] Risso, A. 1826. Histoire naturelle des principales productions de l’Europe méridionale et particulièrement de celles des environs de Nice et des Alpes maritimes vol. 5. F.-G. Levrault: Paris.

[SL14] Samu, F., G. Lengyel, É. Szita, A. Bidló & P. Ódor. 2014. The effect of forest stand characteristics on spider diversity and species composition in deciduous-coniferous mixed forests. Journal of Arachnology 42 (2): 135–141.

[S93] Selden, P. A. 1993. Arthropoda (Aglaspidida, Pycnogonida and Chelicerata). In: Benton, M. J. (ed.) The Fossil Record 2 pp. 297–320. Chapman & Hall: London.

[S99] Simon, E. 1899. Ergebnisse einer Reise nach dem Pacific (Schauinsland 1896–1897). Arachnoideen. Zoologische Jahrbücher, Abteilung für Systematik, Geographie un Biologie der Thiere 12 (4): 411–437.

[VPB11] Varet, M., J. Pétillon & F. Burel. 2011. Comparative responses of spider and carabid beetle assemblages along an urban-rural boundary gradient. Journal of Arachnology 39 (2): 236–243.

[W19] Wunderlich, J. 2019. What is a spider? Cretaceous fossils modify strongly phylogenetics as well as diagnoses of families, superfamilies and even suborders of spiders (Araneida) and other arthropods. Beiträge zur Araneologie 12: 1–32.

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