Family Miturgidae- Long-legged Sac Spiders

This page contains pictures and information about Long-legged Sac Spiders that we found in the Brisbane area, Queensland, Australia.
Family Miturgidae is newly separated from family Clubionidae. Spiders in this family are usually small in size. Most of them are nocturnal hunters. They had eight legs arranged in two rows.  

Long-legged Sac Spider - Cheiracanthium sp.

Body length 12mm  
The spider is pale brown in colour with a dagger marking on light grey abdomen.  
The spider was found in Anstead Bushland on Jan 2009. It was in a retreat formed by curling green grass leaf into a small room. From its pale brown colours, we believe the spider hunts at night.  
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We found another retreat with Long-legged Sac Spider on Oct 2009 in Anstead Forest.  The retreat formed by a green gum leaf folded and help by silk. There were a bundle of eggs inside. The spider's abdomen was like a deflated balloon. To our suprise it had only four legs, half were missing. We wondered it may have consumed its own legs while guarding its egg-sac.........need more observation to confirm this.
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We tried to put its retreat back to before we disturbed, of course it would need a lot of the spider's effort to repair it. 

1. Cheiracanthium species - The Find-a-spider Guide for Australian Spiders, University of Southern Queensland, 2007.
2. A Guide to Australian Spiders - Densey Clyne, Melbourne, Nelson 1969, p50 (Clubionidae).

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Last updated: October 12, 2009.