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Pholcidae (Cellar Spiders)

Because of their long legs, Cellar Spiders are often confused with Harvestmen (Opiliones). These animals do belong to the same Class of Arachnids, however, they belong to a different Order than Spiders. Cellar Spiders can easily be distinguished from them by the construction of their bodies, that in contrast to Harvestmen is composed of two parts instead of one. When disturbed, Cellar Spiders will make very fast, vibrating movements. About 40 species occur in Europe.

Genus Holocnemus

These spiders are slightly smaller than those of the genus Pholcus and often build an irregular sheetweb between prickly pear cacti or in walls. They mainly occur in Southern Europe.


Genus Pholcus

These spiders build a loose, tangled web, mainly in corners of buildings. The mating lasts several hours, and usually takes place in spring. After this, the female lays her eggs (which stick together by a liquid) in a simple cocoon. This cocoon consists of only a few silk threads. The female carries it around with her chelicerae until the eggs are hatched. Then she deposits the spiderlings onto the web.


Genus Spermophora

These tiny spiders (2–3 mm) have a round abdomen and an uniform colour, apart from a few black spots. The eyes are clustered together in two groups of three. In those groups they stand so close together that it seems that the spider only has two large irregular eyes.