Summary for Porrhomma cambridgei (Araneae)
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About this speciesRecorded altitude range
A species recorded from Dorset, Hertfordshire, Middlesex and Sussex. It has also been recorded from Germany and Switzerland.
Habitat and ecology
The reduced eyes and pale colour of P. cambridgei suggest a subterranean habit (Merrett 1994). Like many other species in the genus, the most likely habitat is within soil cracks in grassland and crop fields. Thus far, only females have been found in Britain. They have been found above ground attempting to balloon. Elsewhere in Europe, P. cambridgei has only been found in Germany and Switzerland amongst sparse vegetation in sandy areas (Merrett 1994).
The spider is scarce and likely to be confined to southern England. It has only been recorded from one 10 km square post-1992, in Middlesex, but also Sussex in 1990.
Too little is known about the habitats and ecology of this species to accurately determine what threats it faces. However, if arable land forms a significant part of its habitat, excessive use of soil insecticides and soil compaction by heavy agricultural machinery could potentially be damaging.
Management and conservation
Ensure arable or grassland habitats where it occurs are not subject to undue disturbance by agricultural machinery which could result in excessive compaction of voids in soil that are thought to be its micro-habitat. Avoid excessive use of soil insecticides in arable land on which it may occur. However, there is a need to determine the exact micro-habitat requirements of this species to inform management requirements.
Text based on Dawson, I.K., Harvey, P.R., Merrett, P. & Russell-Smith, A.R. (in prep.). References
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