Chelifer cancroides

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Chelifer cancroides
2008 chelifer cancroides 3.jpg
Chelifer cancroides
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Arachnida
Order: Pseudoscorpiones
Family: Cheliferidae
Genus: Chelifer
Species: C. cancroides
Binomial name
Chelifer cancroides
(Linnaeus, 1758)

Chelifer cancroides, the house pseudoscorpion, is a species of pseudoscorpions. It is a cosmopolitan, synanthropic, and harmless species to humans.[1]


There are two subspecies:[2]

  • Chelifer cancroides cancroides (Linnaeus, 1758)
  • Chelifer cancroides orientalis Morikawa, 1954


Chelifer cancroides measure 2.5–4.5 mm (0.098–0.177 in) in length. The pedipalps are very long,[3] measuring 7–9 mm (0.28–0.35 in) when extended. The body is teardrop-shaped and has a rich mahogany color. The abdomen has 12 segments, only 10 of which are easily visible. The cephalothorax has one pair of eyes.[1]


Males maintain small mating territories, few centimeters in size. When a female enters the territory, the male initiates a mating dance and eventually deposits a spermatophore, which is then picked up by the females. Fecundity is 20–40 eggs. The development from egg stage into maturity takes 10 to 24 months and involves three molts;[1] molting may involve building a silk nest.[3] The total life span is 3–4 years.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d Jacobs, Steve. "Pseudoscorpions". Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences Department of Entomology. Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  2. ^ "Chelifer cancroides". Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Retrieved 20 June 2017. 
  3. ^ a b Levi, Herbert W. (1948). "Notes on the life history of the pseudoscorpion Chelifer cancroides (Linn.) (Chelonethida)". Transactions of the American Microscopical Society. 67 (3): 290–298. JSTOR 3223197. doi:10.2307/3223197. 

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