Summary for Lepthyphantes insignis (Araneae)
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About this speciesDistribution
The species is widespread but scattered across England, mainly in the south-east. There are few records from Scotland and none from Wales. It is uncommon but widespread in north-western and central Europe as far north as Sweden, where it is on their Red List (Gärdenfors 2000).
Habitat and ecology
L. insignis is found mainly in dry grassland, and occasionally on arable land. Daws (2001b) has recently found two males and five females in a row of recently constructed drainage culverts in an extension of a Victorian cemetery. Several of the female webs had white egg-sacs adjacent to them, stuck onto the concrete wall of the culverts. A subterranean life style, possibly gregarious in favourable conditions has been suggested by Daws. Adults have been found at most times of the year, mainly in the autumn, winter and spring.
The spider is very local and not usually numerous. Intensive sampling programmes collected the species in numbers in fields of winter wheat at several locations (Powell 1993) and seven have recently been found together in a line of culverts (Daws 2001b).
The loss of grassland to agriculture, or grassland to forestry.
Original author of profile: P.R. Harvey, based on Merrett (1990)
Text based on Harvey, P.R., Nellist, D.R. & Telfer, M.G. (eds) 2002. Provisional atlas of British spiders (Arachnida, Araneae), Volumes 1 & 2. Huntingdon: Biological Records Centre. References
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