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spider drama (Part 1) - Pholcus phalangioides - female

spider drama (Part 1) - Pholcus phalangioides - Female
Ackworth, Warren County, Iowa, USA
April 24, 2009
Size: ~7 mm body
In a nook under my kitchen counter, one spider had captured another. From previous IDs of my BugGuide postings (from this very house), I believe the predator is a cellar spider and the victim (harder to tell!) might be a bark crab spider . A few minutes after this photo was taken, two cellar spiders appeared to be clashing over the victim.

Images of this individual: tag all
spider drama (Part 1) - Pholcus phalangioides - female spider drama (Part 1) - Pholcus phalangioides spider drama (Part 1) - Pholcus phalangioides

Moved from Cellar Spiders.

Pholcus and Hogna
The cellar spider is nearly for sure Pholcus phalangioides again. It is hard to see everything that would actually ID it, but based on the fact that you DO have these in your house (that other one confirms it) and the fact that you couldn't get a more common spider if you tried...I would think that this ID is fine. I can just barely make out a tiny bit of the epigyne area, which is red in this species, so that would make this a female. The Lycosid prey is most likely a female Hogna helluo. There aren't any Iowa submissions for H. helluo yet, so you might even want to consider splitting those photos off by themselves and putting them with the other helluo...and then just adding links to this cellar spider and vice versa? I think it's really neat that you unwrapped the prey to see what it was. Remember on the last cellar spider how I said it eats large prey? that's proof. :)

Wolf spider link
I followed Mandy's suggestion and created a new posting for the Hogna helluo prey:

Now it will show up in Iowa. The first H. helluo for your state. :)

cellar spider
You are right on the cellar spider, not sure on the victim. I've read that cellar spiders should be left in your house to control other spiders.

Victim ID
Thanks, Lynette! You are right about the victim ID (I should refrain from speculating like that). I took the dead spider and peeled away the webbing. I was surprised how big - and lifelike! - it became after cleaning and unfolding. I've added a series of photos. Maybe wolf spider? (oops, there I go again!).

Wolf spider victim
You got it. Sorry can't offer anything beyond that.

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