Microlinyphia pusilla

    Description

    This species displays strong sexual dimorphism: The male is black and shiny with a narrow abdomen that often has two white spots, and with a body length (excluding legs) of around 5 mm; The female is slightly larger with a much plumper, slivery abdomen bearing a leaf-shaped black mark.

    Similar Species

    Microlinyphia impigra is similar but females have thinner dark cardiac mark. Males usually lack the abdominal white patches seen on M. pusilla.

    Photo ID?
    Habitat

    This species spins a horizontal sheet web in low vegetation in a wide range of habitats including heathland, but is perhaps commonest in grassland.

    When to see it

    Both sexes are mature in spring and summer, with a peak from early to mid-summer, individuals occasionally persisting into the autumn.

    UK Status

    The species is widespread in much of Britain.

    VC55 Status

    Fairly frequent in Leicestershire and Rutland.

    Further Information

    4036 British records to Jan 2013

    Leicestershire & Rutland Map

    UK Map