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Abundant and rare spiders on tree trunks in German forests (Arachnida, Araneae)

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Abundant and rare spiders on tree trunks in German forests (Arachnida, Araneae)


Heft 40


The spider fauna active on the bark of trees in forests on eight sites in different regions in Germany was investigated. Trunk eclectors at about 2-4 meters height on living trees were used in different regions of Germany (SW Bavaria, Hesse, Brandenburg) between 1990 and 2003. In Hesse eclectors were also used on dead beech trees (standing and lying). In this study data, mainly from beech (Fagus sylvatica) and spruce (Picea abies), from May to October are compared – whole year samples (including winter) are only available from Hesse. A total of 334 spider species were recorded with these bark traps, i.e. about one third of the spider species known from Germany. On average, each of the eight regions yielded 140.5 (± 26.2) species, each single tree 40.5 (± 12.2) species and 502 (± 452) adult spiders per season (i.e. May to Oct.). The 20 most abundant species are listed and characterised in detail. Six of the 20 species were not known to be abundant on bark, three prefer conifers and three beech/broadleaf. Even in winter (December-March) there was a remarkably high activity on the trunks. However, only a few species occur exclusively or mainly in winter. Finally, the rarity of some bark spider species is discussed and details (all known records in Germany, phenology) of four of them are presented (Clubiona leucaspis, Gongylidiellum edentatum, Kratochviliella bicapitata, Oreonetides quadridentatus). The diversity and importance of the spider fauna on bark in Central Europe is still underestimated.


bark; common species; distribution; eclectors; Germany; rare species