id difficulty for Araniella cucurbitina sens. str.

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Identification difficulty rating=3
Adult voucher specimen needs checking under magnification and good lighting. The Recording Scheme would accept records from experienced recorders without further question unless the date, region or habitat was especially unusual. Voucher specimen should be retained.  Records accepted from known experienced recorders.

Araniella cucurbitina and A. opisthographa cannot be identified without microscopical examination of adults, and even then can present problems, especially in females. These two widespread species also cannot be separated from other Araniella species from photographs or in the field. ADULT Araniella displicata may be provisionally recognisable by their coloration, but even then many juvenile and subadult Araniella species can possess similar reddish coloration.
Care needed to distinguish both sexes of Araniella cucurbitina and A.opisthographa
Specimens are commonly assumed to be A. cucurbitina especially if presented as a photo. Misdentifications will result.

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Males and females may present different identification difficulty in spiders. These identification ratings are based on the most difficult identification. New species may become recognised or become part of the British fauna e.g. from Europe, so identification should be made with the awareness that this is a possibility and that confirmation may be needed in the form of a voucher specimen.