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Family Phrurolithidae - Guardstone Spiders

Phrurotimpus borealis male - Phrurotimpus borealis - male Spider - Phrurotimpus Which spider is this? - Phrurotimpus Small spider under tarp - Phrurotimpus Castianeira? - Phrurotimpus - male Gnaphosidae? Scotinella--voucher image - Scotinella - female Spider - Phrurotimpus
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Chelicerata (Chelicerates)
Class Arachnida (Arachnids)
Order Araneae (Spiders)
Infraorder Araneomorphae (True Spiders)
No Taxon (Entelegynae)
Family Phrurolithidae (Guardstone Spiders)
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
6 genera found in North America transferred from Corinnidae to the new family Phrurolithidae by Ramírez, 2014.(1)(2) Drassinella returned to Liocranidae by Azevedo et al., 2022.(3)
Explanation of Names
"Having previously been lumped into the Corinnidae, Liocranidae, or even Clubionidae, the group has never even received a common name. After consultation with the American Arachnological Society’s committee on common names, I’ve adopted the suggestion (by the late Robin Leech) of “guardstone spiders” for these taxa. That name reflects the etymology of the type genus, Phrurolithus, which is a compound adjective that means “guarding the stone” and refers to the habits of the type species, as described by C.L. Koch (1839: 101), and translated by Cameron (2005: 315):
Her abode, as Hahn already observed, is always under stones. Underneath them the female lays her eggs in a spherical lump and spins over them a light, transparent web, on which the mother awaits the hatching of her young.
Whether all species of the family share this egg sac guarding behavior is uncertain;" (Platnick, 2019)(4)
Phrurolithus - 26 species in USA (under 3 mm, Castianeira/Micaria look-alike)(5)
Phruronellus - 5 species in USA
Phrurotimpus - 20 species & 3 subspecies in USA & Canada
Piabuna - 5 species in USA (very small, less than 2 mm, AMEs large)
Scotinella -16 species in USA & Canada
Exact distribution within these countries will be added when time permits.

Phrurolithus - All in the USA
- absurdus
- aemulatus
- alatus
- apacheus
- apertus
- banksi
- callidus
- camawhitae
- catalinius
- concisus
- connectus
- dolius
- duncani
- emertoni
- goodnighti
- kastoni
- kentuckyensis
- leviculus
- oabus
- paludivagus
- parcus
- pinturus
- pipensis
- schwarzi
- similis
- singulus
- umbratilis

- brevispina - USA
- longispina - USA
- nanna - USA
- pallida - USA
- xerophila - USA

Print References
The morphology and phylogeny of dionychan spiders
By Ramírez, Martín J.(1)
Internet References
World Spider Catalog (2020). World Spider Catalog. Version 20.5. Natural History Museum Bern, online at, accessed on January 5, 2020.

~ Revision of Drassinella Platnick & Ubick, 1989. - Descriptions, ranges & drawings of palps/epigynes.
Works Cited
1.The morphology and phylogeny of dionychan spiders
Ramírez, Martín J. 2014. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History.
2.World Spider Catalog
3.Combining genomic, phenotypic and sanger sequencing data to elucidate the phylogeny of the two-clawed spiders (Dionycha)
Azevedo et al., 2022. 2022. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 166(107327): 1-14.
4.The guardstone spiders of the Phrurotimpus palustris group (Araneae, Phrurolithidae)
Norman I.Platnick. 2019. American Museum novitates, no. 3944.
5.New American Spiders of the Family Clubionidae I
W.J. Gertsch. 1941. The American Museum of Natural History; No. 1147.