Slater-eating Spider
  Dysdera crocata
  Family: Dysderidae  ID: Koch, 1839
 
Slater-eating Spider
Slater-eating Spider

Habitat and Biology
As its name suggests, the slater-eating spider prefers a diet of slaters (or wood-lice) which it captures with specially elongated fangs. It is believed to have been introduced into Australia from Europe and only occurs in the south-eastern part of the continent. It prefers damp habitats under logs, rocks, rubbish etc., places it is most likely to encounter prey. It is relatively common in urban gardens. Apparently this spider has a strong aversion to ants, which limits its distribution in this country. The slater-eating spider builds a silken sac-like retreat in which it rests, moults and lays eggs. The eggs are wrapped in silk and guarded by the female until hatching.

Colour
Male: Similar to female.
Female: Cephalothorax and legs reddish brown, abdomen cream to pale grey.

Form
Body cylindrical, abdomen stout, fangs noticeably elongated and projecting forward.

Body Length
Male: 11mm
Female: 14mm

Web type
Does not build a web.

Bite
The bite not considered dangerous but causes itchy local reactions.

© Museum Victoria Australia