|Dear Nature Plus,|
I would be very grateful for some help with finding the sub order of two spiders.
The spiders were found in august in a lowland arable wheatfield in Essex.
This was near a hawthorn/blackthorn hedgerow and a wildflower buffer strip consisting of false oat, some meadow thistle, wild carrot, ribwort plantain, birds foot trefoil, smaller cats tail, scentless mayweed and yarrow.
I am currently trying to use 'The Country Life guide to spiders in britain and northern Ireland to identify these.
I don't know about the top picture - trying to learn more about these creatures myself. The lower one, going by the carapace marking, might be in the Lycosidae family - wolf spiders. It's hard to make out the eye arrangement amidst the reflection from the fluid but I'm trying to convince myself that it is like the typical lycosidae arangement shown in your book, so I'd want to take a closer look there.
I think this latest one is Pachygnatha degeeri. But I think you're catching them in pitfall traps and they've been in the traps for a few days. So, they've deteriorated which makes identifying them more difficult.
The wolf spider may be a young Pardosa such as P. monticola but that's just a guess. There aren't many juveniles that you can identify to species with certainty.
Thank you both for your help, this is the first time I have had to identify spiders so I am finding it quite difficult! They do look like Pachygnatha degeeri and possibly P. monticola so I will take a look through the familys and check it under the microscope.
Thanks once again,
Maybe you know this helpful book already, but in case you haven't come across it here goes:
We used it at a spider id workshop that I attended once - found it pretty handy in getting id down to family level at least, if I remember correctly.