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Stiphidion facetum 11.JPG
Stiphidion facetum
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Chelicerata
Class: Arachnida
Order: Araneae
Infraorder: Araneomorphae
Family: Stiphidiidae
Dalmas, 1917

See text.

13 genera, 94 species

The Stiphidiidae are a spider family with 94 described species in 13 genera. They are sometimes called sheetweb spiders. They are generally of medium size (Stiphidion facetum is about 8 mm long) and build a horizontal tent-like web under rocks. Most species are speckled brown with long legs.

New Zealand has a variety of species in the family Stiphidiidae. The largest of New Zealand's sheetweb spiders is Cambridgea foliata. The body length may be up to around 2.5 cm with a span of up to around 15 cm. It produces webs like a sheet (hence the name) up to a metre across. It is a forest dweller and trampers may encounter the webs though they rarely encounter the spider itself which is nocturnal, spending the day time inside a web tunnel. It will also live in gardens. Male spiders may enter human homes where their size, including their centimetre long mouthparts, may be intimidating though the spider itself is considered harmless to humans and bites are extremely rare.[1][2]


Almost all members of this family occur in New Zealand and Australia. The only exception are two species of Ischaela, I. incerta from Madagascar, and I. longiceps from Mauritius.


See also[edit]


  • Gray, M. R. & H. M. Smith (2002). Therlinya, a new genus of spiders from eastern Australia (Araneae: Amaurobioidea). Rec. austral. Mus. 54: 293-312.PDF

External links[edit]