This is a frame from a recent recording:



Forest in Central Europe at around 1pm.

Abiotic factors at the time of recording

  • Temperature = 23°C
  • Humidity = 38%
  • Wind = 6 km/h


  • Approximate size = ~3 cm including limbs
  • Semi-transparent limbs and cephalothorax, opaque abdomen
  • The abdomen presents a pattern which reminds me of the coat pattern in giraffe G. camelopardalis tippelskirchii
  • its general morphology makes me think it might be part of Pholcidae family but I'm not entirely sure because the height of the abdomen seems a bit too bulbous on the Y axis
  • web structure rather irregular

Observed behavior

Very short reaction time (dropped a piece of leaf on top of its web), very fast moving spider. I can't provide a better estimation for the speed, but here's is the 3rd frame after the one above (on the previous two frames it just very slightly flexes its limbs):


And one frame later it's already gone.

Internet search

  • Google image search: no results using the first image you see in this post
  • Google text search: different sentences like "long-legged transparent forest spider" only returned the usual daddy long legs you can find at home in urban areas.
  • Finally I tried https://spiderid.com/spiders/ selecting white and brown but none of the displayed spiders matches anything that resembles the frame above.

Any help will be much appreciated. I guess the pattern on the abdomen is key to identify this species but I haven't had a lot of luck while looking for abdominal spider patterns.

  • $\begingroup$ Go to iNaturalist and type in "spiders" as well as your country, then go to the species tab and scroll down until you find it. $\endgroup$ Sep 17, 2020 at 0:08

2 Answers 2



Unfortunately, I'm not very experienced at European spiders, but I suspect you're looking in the wrong place. First of all, this appears to be an adult male spider (large ball-like structures at the ends of the pedipalps, in front of the 'face'), so the body pattern is probably going to be a bit different from the one you see on the females. Male patterns are often an afterthought in identification references, unfortunately.

Secondly, this doesn't look much like a Pholcid to me - I'm getting more of a Linyphiid impression, from the shape of the abdomen, the visible patterns on cephalothorax and abdomen, and the filmy sheet it's hanging under. I wish I could be of more help than this - but perhaps Ed Nieuwenhuys can help. Here's a link to his site; if you look down toward the bottom, there's a contact link you could send him a photo and this question:


  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Hi, Pawelek - for some reason, the answer dropped the "Hi," I had put before your name, and it refused to let me add it in later. Most odd and unfriendly! At any rate, please don't think I would simply start right in in that brusque fashion. I'm a grouch, but not an unfriendly one! $\endgroup$ Aug 27, 2019 at 21:02
  • $\begingroup$ Stack Exchange discourages "hi" and such salutation on the post though. $\endgroup$
    – Andrew T.
    Aug 29, 2019 at 11:29
  • $\begingroup$ John, I wrote to Ed and he confirmed it is a linyphiid as you suggested. He said it looks like a Frontinellina frutetorum. If you modify your answer to reflect this I'll be happy to mark it as accepted. Thanks for the help! $\endgroup$ Aug 29, 2019 at 12:06
  • $\begingroup$ Hi, Pawelek; That's a nice offer, but I would feel a bit dishonest if I modified my post to give a suggested species that I don't, in fact, know. I'm glad Ed gave you a probable ID! $\endgroup$ Aug 30, 2019 at 14:25
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    $\begingroup$ I suggested so because I wouldn't have been able to get such a close match if you hadn't pointed me to Ed's site :) (for which I'm thankful). I'll answer it then for the sake of not letting the question "hanging" after having managed to get a probable match. $\endgroup$ Aug 30, 2019 at 17:22

It looks like a male Linyphiid, most probably a Frontinellina frutetorum

 Frontinellina frutetorum. Source: wikipedia

Source: https://ednieuw.home.xs4all.nl/Spiders/Linyphiidae/Linyphiidae.htm

Thanks to John Robinson and Ed Nieuwenhuys who helped get a probable match for this spider.


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