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The Orb-weaving Spiders of Canada and Alaska - The Insects and Arachnids of Canada Part 23
By Dondale, C.D., J.H. Redner, P, Paquin and H.W. Levi
NRC Research Press, 2003
ISBN: 0-660-18898-8
Cite: 14714 with citation markup [cite:14714]
After being discontinued for 10 years, monographs are again being published in the excellent Insect and Arachnids of Canada series. This is the first of, hopefully, more to come. I'm sorry it took me 2 years to find out about this exciting development.

Can be ordered directly from the web starting at:
or start at: and see what else you can get.

As for the book itself it covers spiders of the Uloboridae, Tetragnathidae, Araneidae, and Theridiosomatidae and seems to be good for Canada and the northern USA. Their dot maps cover all of Canada and the continental USA and despite the title, just flipping through I don't see many that actually make it to Alaska. Indeed many of the species covered don't even come into Canada. Perhaps they are expected. I have not read the introduction extensively yet.

Lots of line drawings and somewhat technical. For positive spider identification it appears one has to use a microscope. I think I'll be able to use it more generally to at least sort out most of the genera. Has good intro paragraphs for each genera, diagnostic and biology, and lots of introduction info, including a section on web-building. This is my only disappointment. I was hoping it would include diagrams on web design which I understand can be helpful in genus and even species ID for these families. Only one diagram for one genera is included, otherwise looks like a good book and I'm glad to support this programme.

Correction -
Sorry - this one is not yet available as a free download...

Ken, you're on the ball -- just the information I was looking for (my paperbook copy is coming apart at the seams).

Mine too!
The book was expensive enough... seems like it could have been put together better. My pages 183-247 are all completely loose, no longer attached to the spine or to each other.

[edit] Just checked google books; it is available in preview mode, but not sure if every single page is there for viewing.

Spiral binding
My copy was becoming too hard to keep together (pretty much all pages loose from the spine; I assume this is happening to other people, too)... so I took it to a 'FedEx Office' store and they spiral bound it for only about $4.50. So worth the money! I think I will get a lot of other things spiral bound, too (like the rest of the Insects & Arachnids of Canada set).

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