Male Theridiosoma gemmosum, from Pavouci.

Belongs within: Araneoidea.

The Theridiosomatidae are minute spiders found in shaded and humid areas. Members of the family are united by an anteriorly broadly truncated sternum with pit organs on the frontal margin. They construct orb-webs that they pull into a dome shape by a taut thread extending from its centre (Jocqué & Dippenaar-Schoemann 2007). This thread is then released to slam the web against potential prey (Paquin et al. 2010).

Characters (from Jocqué & Dippenaar-Schoeman 2007): Very small; eight eyes present; legs with three tarsal claws; long trichobothria on dorsal side of tibiae III and IV, usually 2–4 times as long as diameter of tibia; pit organs present on prolateral margin of sternum; ecribellate; entelegyne; spermathecae connate.

<==Theridiosomatidae [Theridiosomateae]
    |  i. s.: Wendilgarda L88
    |           |--W. atricolor L88
    |           |--W. clara L88
    |           `--W. mexicana L88
    |         Chtonos JD-S07
    |         Baalzebub Coddington 1986 PVD10
    |           `--B. baubo JD-S07
    |         Cyclososoma succini Petrunkevitch 1958 S93
    |         Palaeoepeirotypus P92
    |--Epeirotypus E90 [Epeirotypinae JD-S07]
    |--Ogulniinae JD-S07
    |--Plato AM07 [Platoninae JD-S07]
    `--Theridiosoma Pickard-Cambridge 1879 [Theridiosomatinae] JD-S07
         |--*T. gemmosum (Koch 1872) SC97, W76
         |--T. brauni Wunderlich 1976 W76
         |--T. circuloargenteum Wunderlich 1976 W76
         |--T. epeiroides Bösenberg & Strand 1906 MG03
         `--T. semiargentea Simon 1895 W76

*Type species of generic name indicated


[AM07] Acosta, L. E., & G. Machado. 2007. Diet and foraging. In: Pinto-da-Rocha, R., G. Machado & G. Giribet (eds) Harvestmen: The Biology of Opiliones pp. 309–338. Harvard University Press: Cambridge (Massachusetts).

[E90] Eberhard, W. G. 1990. Early stages of orb construction by Philoponella vicinia, Leucauge mariana, and Nephila clavipes (Araneae, Uloboridae and Tetragnathidae), and their phylogenetic implications. Journal of Arachnology 18: 205–234.

[JD-S07] Jocqué, R., & A. S. Dippenaar-Schoeman. 2007. Spider Families of the World. Royal Museum for Central Africa: Tervuren (Belgium).

[L88] Liebherr, J. K. 1988. General patterns in West Indian insects, and graphical biogeographic analysis of some circum-Caribbean Platynus beetles (Carabidae). Systematic Zoology 37 (4): 385–409.

[MG03] Marusik, Yu. M., & E. F. Guseinov. 2003. Spiders (Arachnida: Aranei) of Azerbaijan. 1. New family and genus records. Arthropoda Selecta 12 (1): 29–46.

[PVD10] Paquin, P., C. J. Vink & N. Dupérré. 2010. Spiders of New Zealand: annotated family key and species list. Manaaki Whenua Press: Lincoln (New Zealand).

[P92] Poinar, G. O., Jr. 1992. Life in Amber. Stanford University Press: Stanford.

[SC97] Scharff, N., & J. A. Coddington. 1997. A phylogenetic analysis of the orb-weaving spider family Araneidae (Arachnida, Araneae). Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 120: 355–434.

[S93] Selden, P. A. 1993. Arthropoda (Aglaspidida, Pycnogonida and Chelicerata). In: Benton, M. J. (ed.) The Fossil Record 2 pp. 297–320. Chapman & Hall: London.

[W76] Wunderlich, J. 1976. Spinnen aus Australien. 1. Uloboridae, Theridiosomatidae und Symphytognathidae (Arachnida: Araneida). Senckenbergiana Biologica 57 (1–3): 113–124.

Last updated: 15 January 2022.

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