Spiders · Urban Ecology · Biodiversity

Posts by Lizzy

Amazing spiders!

It’s been a very busy couple of months, but I’m almost finished classifying all my spiders. With over 5000 individuals it’s been a difficult but exciting process. Here is a sneak preview of some of the amazing diversity I’ve found in Sydney backyards.

Observations of Golden Orb Weavers

It’s getting pretty cold Sydney in the moment, which means that most orb weaving spiders are coming towards the end of their season and I finally have some time to reconcile the work I’ve been doing for the last few months.

Bee tags on spiders!

I’ve just started what I hope will be the one of the last experiments for my PhD, which involves collecting Golden Orb Weavers and transplanting them to new sites.

“Cyclops spider”

Now this is a weird one; Family Oecobiidae Genus: Oecobius They are very odd looking with their small bunch of eyes and flat round head.

Scorpion tailed spiders and leaf curl...

I love scorpions, and you may have already worked out that I have a soft spot for spiders, so these guys are definitely favorites. Scorpion tailed spiders (genus Arachnura) are one of those great taxa where the name says it all. They come from one of the most common families of spider, the Araneidae which […]

Venomless spiders

During my searches I have often seen lots of webs with many small black spiders, all within the same web. But it wasn’t until I collected some and put them under the microscope that I identified them as belonging to the family Uloboridae, commonly called Venomless spiders.

More cool crab spiders

It’s been a little quiet on my blog scene for the last few weeks. It’s field work season (yay!) so I’m spending my time out searching for my golden orb weavers and writing up a paper (stay tuned!).Even though I’m not currently sorting my samples, I wanted to share some more cool little spiders I […]

Is this spider male or female?

I promised a while ago to explain how to tell the difference between male and female spiders. It’s one of the most common questions I get asked, especially by kids when I point out a mummy or daddy spider! On a side note, I met so many kids during my garden surveys that were fascinated […]

Lynx spiders

Lynx spiders come from the family Oxyopidae. As my supervisor likes to say, they are like a cross between jumping spiders and wolf spiders. As you can imagine this makes them very hard to catch! They don’t build a web to catch prey so they have good eye sight (like jumping spiders) for catching insects […]


Theridiidae is a very large family of spiders (Wikipedia tells me there are over 2200 species). One famous example is the Hawiian happy face spider, which is cute AND has an interesting evolutionary history (it is only found in certain locations along the Hawaiian chain of islands). The most obvious Theridiid species from Australia is […]

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