#221 Grass (Funnel) Spiders – Agelenopsis.spp.

05 October

Agelenopsis, commonly known as the American grass spiders, is genus of funnel weavers first described by C. G. Giebel in 1869. They weave sheet webs that have a funnel shelter on one edge. The web is not sticky, but these spiders make up for that shortcoming by running very rapidly. The larger specimens (depending on species) can grow to about 19 mm in body length. They may be recognized by the arrangement of their eight eyes into three rows. The top row has two eyes, the middle row has four eyes, and the bottom row has two eyes (spaced wider than the ones on the top row). They have two prominent hind spinnerets, somewhat indistinct bands on their legs, and two dark bands running down either side of the cephalothorax.

Agelenopsis aperta, the American funnel-web spider, produces agatoxins. Their bite causes rapid paralysis in insect prey, though their venom is not medically significant to humans.

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