Cellar Spider with Eggs and Baby

2016 December 21

Sam and Rosie found this spider in the corner of our bathroom on July 15, 2016. It’s another example of our old friend Pholcus phalangioiedes, the common cellar spider that is found in houses all around the world. She had eggs.


Since her eggs looked nearly ready to pop, and I didn’t have pictures of the babies of this species yet, we kept her for about a week until they hatched. Her babies were very tiny, with bodies about the size of the period at the end of a sentence, and while their legs were pretty long relative to their bodies they were nothing like as proportionately long as their mother’s.


The babies are so tiny that they must initially feed on equally tiny prey. Probably things like dust mites, that are so small that you won’t even see them in the house without a magnifying glass.


Unlike a lot of other spiders, the mother spider was fine after the eggs hatched, and went on none the worse for the experience. I’ve read that these spiders can live for 3 or 4 years, and have multiple egg clusters over that time.


So, she probably went off to fatten up on tiny bugs in preparation for her next batch of eggs.

One Response
  1. December 21, 2016

    It would be cool if she allowed mites to infest her as she was waiting for the babies to hatch that they could then clean off of her for their first meal.

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