Sunday, June 24, 2012

Adventures in Spider Misidentification: Sac Spiders

Sac spiders don't mind the dew
Ever had one of those nights when you had too much fun and awoke the next morning damp with dew? Well, looks like it can happen to Sac Spiders too. At least we think these are Sac Spiders, male to the left, female to the right, in the family Clubionidae. With only two genera in our area, we have a fifty-fifty chance of being right in calling these damply amorous two Clubiona, Leaf-curling Sac Spiders, but that requires the assumption we have the right family.
Sac Spider or Ground Spider?
We used to think this wandering female might be a Clubiona too, but now wonder if it isn't a member of the highly diverse Ground Spider family Gnaphosidae?
A curled leaf?
Well, when in doubt, stick to some definitive character if you can find one - and Leaf-curling Spiders should curl leaves, right?
And what lies in wait?
What else but a Leaf-curling Spider Clubiona sp.!
Well, Clubiona, no doubt, but the species still remains uncertain. It didn't feel right collecting mom before all the kiddies had hatched, at least not with any purpose better than idle curiosity. So, someday a pit fall may give us a definitive answer, but for the moment we are happy with Clubiona.
A young Clubiona? Maybe or may be not.

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