Summary for Xysticus acerbus (Araneae)

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National Distribution

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Xysticus acerbus male Copyright: Peter Harvey
Identification difficulty rating: 4
Name: Xysticus acerbus
Authority: Thorell, 1872
Order: Arachnida: Araneae
Family: Thomisidae
National Rarity status: NR
IUCN status: LC

Records: 143
First Record: 1880
Latest Record: 2022

1992-on hectads: 44
Pre-1992 hectads: 14
Total hectads: 56

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About this species

Recorded altitude range
2m to 164m

Species text

There are scattered records in the south. The species is widespread in western and central Europe, but is absent from Scandinavia and has not been recorded from Ireland.

Habitat and ecology
The spider occurs in a fairly wide range of grassland habitats, chalk or limestone grassland in Dorset, Hampshire and Somerset, short meadow grassland in Sussex and Glamorgan and sand dunes at Braunton Burrows (Devon). It has also been found on heathland and coastal under-cliff in Dorset. In 2005 numerous juveniles were found at a washlands in South Essex, with one adult being reared through. Both sexes are adult in April and May.

The spider appears to be very local and at most sites only a few specimens have been found, but there now seems to be an increase in distribution and frequency happening, at least in some areas.

Threats are difficult to assess because of its varied habitats, but the loss of unimproved grassland in general is likely to be detrimental.

Management and conservation
Maintain unimproved calcareous and other grassland by grazing.

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 75 records with adult season information)


background methodology

Broad Habitat Data (based on 35 records with habitat information)

Broad subhabitat Data (based on 3 records with subhabitat information)

Structural Habitat Data (based on 28 records with structural habitat information)

Habitat Detail and Method (based on 31 records with habitat detail and method information)

Recorded management for locations with Xysticus acerbus

Recorded substrate and hydrology for locations with Xysticus acerbus


Xysticus acerbus male
Xysticus acerbus male
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