Brown Trapdoor Spider
Size: Male body 20 mm, female body 35 mm.
Habitat: Despite their name, the Brown Trapdoor Spider lives in an open hole in the ground with no trap door at the top. Also they usually look more black than brown.
About the Brown Trapdoor Spider
There are a lot of these where I live, there would be over 20 holes in my garden. Even with that many holes, I've only ever seen a spider three or four times over many years. They look a lot like funnel web spiders, but not as black (but still enough to call them black rather than brown), and not as "built", like a funnel web that's spent less time in the gym.
Note that dead spiders usually fade in colour, so nearly all the spiders will look blacker or darker in colour in real life than they do in the photos of dead spiders from the museum.
Photo taken at Australian Museum, Sydney. High Resolution 3476 x 2440.
Photo taken at Australian Museum, Sydney. High Resolution 4148 x 2724.
Photo taken at Australian Museum, Sydney. High Resolution 2324 x 2023.
Photo taken at Australian Museum, Sydney. High Resolution 3984 x 2588.
Photo taken at Australian Museum, Sydney. High Resolution 1182 x 883.
Photo: Lower Blue Mountains, NSW. High Resolution 2374 x 1860.
Photo: Lower Blue Mountains, NSW. High Resolution 2465 x 1706.
Left to Right: Southern Tree Funnel Web, Sydney Funnel Web male (L), female (R), Brown Trapdoor male (L), female (R), Eastern Mouse Spider male (L), female (R). Photo taken at the Australian Museum, Sydney. High Resolution 3460 x 788.
A Guide to the Spiders of Australia, by Volker W. Framenau, Barbara C. Baehr, and Paul Zborowski.
This is a great field guide to Australian spiders. It's a toss up between this one and Spiderwatch for my second favourite spider field guide. This one is a lot different to Spiderwatch. It's got more than twice the number of pages. It's got much better photos. It comes with a soft clear plastic cover protecting the usual soft cover. On the other side of the argument, it's got no index other than an index of family names (i.e. no index of actual spider names, not their common names and not their scientific names). Which makes it hard to find things in it, if you don't know what family they are in. Also it's based on families and not individual spider species. It's still a wonderful book though.
From the publisher, "This definitive guide to the subject, written by three experts in the field, offers a window into a fascinating world. Notorious species such as the Redback and the Sydney Funnel-web sit alongside less wellknown but equally intriguing spiders such as the ant-mimics and net-casting spiders. The introduction covers spider structure, evolution, reproduction, silk and venom, together with peculiarities of the family within an Australian context.
The two main sections of the book deal with Trapdoor Spiders and Modern Spiders, and within each section there is a chapter on each of the 80 or so spider families that occur in Australia. Each is illustrated with beautiful photographs of the subjects, with more than 30 images per family for some of the larger groups such as the jumping spiders, and many rare images never before published. "
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