Summary for Callilepis nocturna (Araneae)

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National Distribution

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Callilepis nocturna Copyright: Matt Prince
Identification difficulty rating: 4
Name: Callilepis nocturna
Authority: (Linnaeus, 1758)
Order: Arachnida: Araneae
Family: Gnaphosidae
National Rarity status: NR
IUCN status: VU, criteria: D2

Records: 24
First Record: 1969
Latest Record: 2021

1992-on hectads: 3
Pre-1992 hectads: 1
Total hectads: 3

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About this species

Recorded altitude range
20m to 20m

Species text

C. nocturna has been recorded from only three sites in Britain: at Prawle Point and Signalmans Point in south Devon, at Tennyson Down on the Isle of Wight, and more recently in Pembrokeshire, southwest Wales. It is widespread in Europe being recorded from as far north as Scandinavia.

Habitat and ecology
Coastal grassland and cliffs. In Britain it has been recorded running over sandy banks, rocks and exposed chalk, all on sea cliffs. This diurnal species appears to require bare ground with a sunny microclimate and may be associated with ants. On the continent this species is associated with coniferous woodlands, where it is often found under stones. Adults have been found in May and June.

Recorded from only three sites, though no sign of any decline. The exposed bare ground required by the spider at these sites is threatened by scrub encroachment.

The growth of scrub may shade the exposed sandy banks or rocks on which this species has been found.

Management and conservation
Prevent the encroachment of scrub around south facing sandy banks and rocks at the known sites.

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 16 records with adult season information)


background methodology

Broad Habitat Data (based on 7 records with habitat information)

no subhabitat data available

Structural Habitat Data (based on 5 records with structural habitat information)

Habitat Detail and Method (based on 7 records with habitat detail and method information)

Recorded management for locations with Callilepis nocturna

Recorded substrate and hydrology for locations with Callilepis nocturna


Callilepis nocturna CB
Callilepis nocturna CB
Callilepis nocturna
Callilepis nocturna
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