The Australian Huntsman Spiders belong to the family Sparassidae (formerly Heteropodidae). With approximately 200 species of huntsmen in Australia and more being discovered, they are found living across a variety of habitats. Whilst some species are common over wide areas, others are found in specific habitats including rainforests, cool sub-alpine, semi-arid and desert regions.
Huntsman Spiders can be found residing under the loose bark of trees, under rocks, in crevices, rock walls and on foliage. There are a number of social huntsman species (Delena cancerides) that can be observed sitting around, especially under the bark of dead trees, on the ground under rocks and other locations.
The Australian Huntsman spiders are one of those spiders that people like or are terrified of, especially when encountered in unexpected places, like dropping from the sun-screen visor of your car, or scurrying out from behind your curtains at home. It is almost like they have a preference for our houses, as well as giving us a fright in our cars.
The following Isopedella inola – Australian Huntsman Spider was photographed under the extended roof line over a car space in Alice Springs.
- Scientific classification
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Arthropoda
- Subphylum: Chelicerata
- Class: Arachnida
- Order: Araneae
- Infraorder: Araneomorphae
- Family: Sparassidae
there are approximately 88 genera, encompassing 1,363 species (with more species being discovered)
Footnote & References
- Huntsman Spiders, Australian Museum, https://australian.museum/learn/animals/spiders/huntsman-spiders/
- Huntsman Spiders, Minibeast Wildlife, https://www.minibeastwildlife.com.au/resources/huntsman-spiders/