Summary for Myrmarachne formicaria (Araneae)

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National Distribution

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Myrmarachne formicaria Copyright: Peter Harvey
Identification difficulty rating: 3
Name: Myrmarachne formicaria
Authority: (De Geer, 1778)
Order: Arachnida: Araneae
Family: Salticidae
National Rarity status: NS
IUCN status: LC

Records: 193
First Record: 1886
Latest Record: 2022

1992-on hectads: 34
Pre-1992 hectads: 18
Total hectads: 41

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About this species

Recorded altitude range
2m to 700m

Species text

The species is confined to south-east of a line from the Wash to the Severn. It is widespread in western and central Europe, but has not been recorded from Ireland or Denmark.

Habitat and ecology
M. formicaria usually occurs on some type of grassland, sometimes very near the beach and on under-cliff. There are many records from chalk grassland but also stony cliff ledges, saltmarsh, marram and fens. Jones-Walters (1997) reports it as relatively common in the New Forest mires where the common ant Myrmica scabrinodis is abundant. It is an ant-mimic, usually found in company with ants, either running among grass or under stones. Both sexes are adult from May to July, with females until September.

The spider is very local, but fairly numerous at some sites and is possibly most frequent in damp places on under-cliff.

Most of its coastal sites are too inaccessible to be liable to any specific threat, although some have recently been covered by landslides. Some of its chalk grassland, fen and mire sites might be vulnerable to agricultural changes or drainage respectively.

Management and conservation
None needed on coastal sites, but maintain chalk grassland by traditional grazing and maintain water table in fens.

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 65 records with adult season information)


background methodology

Broad Habitat Data (based on 40 records with habitat information)

Broad subhabitat Data (based on 2 records with subhabitat information)

Structural Habitat Data (based on 35 records with structural habitat information)

Habitat Detail and Method (based on 51 records with habitat detail and method information)

Recorded management for locations with Myrmarachne formicaria

Recorded substrate and hydrology for locations with Myrmarachne formicaria


Myrmarachne formicaria male
Myrmarachne formicaria male
Myrmarachne formicaria
Myrmarachne formicaria
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