Pisaura mirabilis

Nursery Web Spider Pisaura mirabilis

Pisaura mirabilis by Martin Askins
Pisaura mirabilis by Martin Askins

The distinctive silken tents of this spider can be found in great profusion on grassy banks and road verges in summer. The Nurseryweb Spider grows to 15mm and has long powerful legs. Having good vision, they are active hunters searching for prey among grasses and low vegetation. When resting or detecting prey, they extend their first and second pairs of legs straight out together at an angle.

A female carries her large eggs sac beneath her body, held in the jaws. Prior to the spiderlings hatching she fixes it to some plants and spins a silken tent around it and then stands guard. It is the distinctive tents that give her away. She guards the eggs and spiderlings, giving rise to the English name of Nurseryweb Spider.

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