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Species Tenuiphantes tenuis

voucher image #46 - Tenuiphantes tenuis Tenuiphantes tenuis - female Spider - Tenuiphantes tenuis - male Tenuiphantes tenuis - female Tenuiphantes tenuis - female Male linyphiid - Lepthyphantes? - Tenuiphantes tenuis - male Male linyphiid - Lepthyphantes? - Tenuiphantes tenuis - male Spider - Tenuiphantes tenuis - female
Classification
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Chelicerata (Chelicerates)
Class Arachnida (Arachnids)
Order Araneae (Spiders)
Infraorder Araneomorphae (True Spiders)
No Taxon (Entelegynes )
Family Linyphiidae (Sheetweb and Dwarf Spiders)
Subfamily Linyphiinae (Sheetweb Spiders)
Genus Tenuiphantes
Species tenuis (Tenuiphantes tenuis)
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Previously Lepthyphantes
Explanation of Names
(Blackwall, 1852)

Author of the name: Blackwall. Year first published: 1852.
Size
Body length: female 2-3.5mm; male 2-3mm.
Identification
One feature is that the legs are not annulated. (1)
Range
"The species is native to Europe. It appeared in the port of Seattle in
1950 and has since spread by ballooning and commerce east to Idaho,
north into BC and south to southern CA. The northeastern USA and
Canada distribution probably comes from a separate introduction. The
species balloons massively and hundreds of them may descend out of the
sky onto a readymade empty habitat like a new-plowed field." ~Rod Crawford
Habitat
Low vegetation, moss, and leaf-litter in a wide variety of habitats. (1)
Season
All year. (1)
Remarks
An introduced species, presumably from Europe, though it is also native to North Africa, Iran, & Afghanistan.

Practically all the numerous species of Lepthyphantes have recently
been distributed to a bunch of new genera by Saaristo and Tanasevitch.
Some of these may turn out to be correct, but they're very poorly
supported. The original authors did not in one single case, state how
any of these new genera differed from "true Lepthyphantes"! In my
opinion, that makes them invalid. The Platnick online catalogue is
very uncritical of new changes - if it's new, it must be right :-).

I prefer to keep these species in the place where we know how to find
them, until the slipshod reclassification is re-done correctly. Of
course I'm in the minority on that, but I'm not alone! Peter Van
Helsdingen and some other famous linyphiid folks are on my side.

The name Lepthyphantes comes from Greek leptos (small) and hyphantes
(weaver), tenuis (Latin) means slender. Tenuiphantes is nonsense
coined with total disregard for the original etymology, since
"phantes" means nothing without its hy- first syllable.

The species is native to Europe. It appeared in the port of Seattle in
1950 and has since spread by ballooning and commerce east to Idaho,
north into BC and south to southern CA. The northeastern USA and
Canada distribution probably comes from a separate introduction. The
species balloons massively and hundreds of them may descend out of the
sky onto a readymade empty habitat like a new-plowed field.

~ Rod Crawford
See Also
Genera with a similar habitus appearance: Bathyphantes & Lepthyphantes
Print References
(1) Roberts, M. J. Collins Field Guide: Spiders of Britain & Northern Europe. HarperCollins, London, 383 pp. (fyi: the World Spider Catalog lists this as 1995, but the book says 1996)

(2) Helsdingen, P. J. van, K. Thaler & C. Deltshev, 1977. The tenuis group of Lepthyphantes Menge (Araneae, Linyphiidae). Tijdschr. Ent. 120: 1-54. (available online through the BHL here; species description starts on the bottom of the page the link takes you to)