Summary for Hilaira frigida (Araneae)

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National Distribution

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Hilaira frigida with egg sac under boulder Copyright: Evan Jones
Identification difficulty rating: 3
Name: Hilaira frigida
Authority: (Thorell, 1872)
Order: Arachnida: Araneae
Family: Linyphiidae
IUCN status: LC

Records: 745
First Record: 1900
Latest Record: 2019

1992-on hectads: 139
Pre-1992 hectads: 79
Total hectads: 170

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About this species

Recorded altitude range
15m to 1309m

Species text

A species restricted to Snowdonia, the Lake District, the Scottish Highlands, Dumfrieshire, Kirkcudbrightshire and Selkirkshire. This is a Holarctic spider with a circumpolar Distribution: (Platnick 1997; Goodier 1967). It is known from the mountains of Ireland, Scandinavia and Poland, but has not been recorded from the Alps.

Habitat and ecology
In Britain H. frigida is typically found beneath felsenmeer rocks on the summits of high mountains. In the far north, the species occurs at lower altitudes. In felsenmeers it favours the interface between rocks and heath rushes. It frequents drier habitats than its British congeners. Mature specimens of both sexes have been recorded between April and September, but it is probably mature throughout the year (winter recording being rare in the mountains). On Snowdon, females have been found guarding egg-sacs suspended within their webs in May.

Local, but may be common in its mountain refugia.

Recreational pressure on mountain tops has increased significantly in recent years with trampling and erosion causing damage to the fragile plant communities present.

Management and conservation
Ensure that further damage to mountain vegetation due to excessive recreational pressure is prevented.

Text based on Dawson, I.K., Harvey, P.R., Merrett, P. & Russell-Smith, A.R. (in prep.).  References

Adult Season

Adult Season Data (based on 188 records with adult season information)


background methodology

Broad Habitat Data (based on 184 records with habitat information)

no subhabitat data available

Structural Habitat Data (based on 134 records with structural habitat information)

Habitat Detail and Method (based on 128 records with habitat detail and method information)

Recorded management for locations with Hilaira frigida

Recorded substrate and hydrology for locations with Hilaira frigida


Hilaira frigida
Hilaira frigida
Hilaira frigida with egg sac under boulder
Hilaira frigida with egg sac under boulder
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