Araneinae is usually considered the largest subfamily of Araneidae in Australia, having more genera assigned to it than any other. It has also been the most in flux as many of its genera were dumping grounds for large numbers of species. In Australia it has been found that many spiders were put into genera that should never have been considered in spite of their similarity to European animals. Some of these are sometimes represented as known to be not correct with single quotes, e.g. 'Araneus'. Australian genera include Acroaspis, Anepsion, Arachnura, Araneus, Cyclosa, Dolophones, Eriophora, Hortophora, Larinia, Lipocrea, Neoscona, Novakiella, Phonognatha, Poltys and Wixia.

Arachnura higginsi

Arachnura higginsi (Koch, 1872) Scorpion-tailed Spider
Arachnura higginsi is an Orbweaver widespread across the southern states of Australia including Tasmania, in most types of bushland, occasionally in gardens. The female stays in centre of her web during the daytime. Adults are usually brown to cream coloured, though juveniles can be brightly coloured, being pink, yellow, red, brown or cream. Females gradually develop the long tail during... 

Araneid sp. Mt Glorious 'astroboy'

Araneid sp. Mt Glorious 'astroboy'
A small Araneid male, so far not matched up with a female, from Mount Glorious subtropical rainforest. Strongly coloured for camouflage in foliage... 

'Araneus' eburnus 8710

'Araneus' dimidiatus group
A small orb weaver with a dark band on the leading edge of the abdomen and two large dark spots on the rear sides of the abdomen, otherwise creamy coloured with dark legs, the tops of which are whitish to clear near the cephalothorax. Strong yellow colour around the anterior median eyes. Female to... 

Araneus acuminatus

'Araneus' acuminatus (L. Koch, 1872) Pointy Orbweaver
A small orbweaver sometimes found in its web in the daytime, with a rather pointed abdomen having a scalloped-edge pattern along the sides. The males especially resemble the smaller and rounder... 

Araneus sp

Araneus albidus (L. Koch, 1871) Pale-backed Orbweaver
A medium-sized orbweaver recorded from coastal Queensland, likely to be fairly widespread at least on the Australian east coast, in most habitats... 

Araneus albotriangulus

Araneus albotriangulus (Keyserling, 1887) White-winged Araneus
Previously known as Araneus parvulus and before that Eriophora parvulus, this is a small spider, female body length 4mm, males about 2mm. It constructs a loose tangled web in shrubs, in this case Carissa ovata (Currant Bush) and often there is an unconcealed hairy/fluffy egg sac nearby. It is recognizable by the yellow wings on the upper front surface of the abdomen. Known from Queensland and... 

Araneus sp

Araneus arenaceus
Dr Volker Framenau wrote after seeing some of these photos: "These seem to be 'Araneus' arenaceus or allied, there are about five of so very similar species out there and the type material of A. arenaceus in the Hamburg University Museum (as far as I can remember) actually contains at least two species. And of course, these are not Araneus, but a new undescribed genus. Male... 

Arkys sp

Araneus cyrtarachnoides (Keyserling, 1887)
A small Arkys-like, Cyrtarachne-like spider quite common in Queensland. Body length up to 5mm. It is an intermediate step between the web-weaving Araneids and the ambush/ camouflage hunters. It retains a very Araneus like cephalothorax but has also begun to develop the sclerotized body like Arkys... 

Araneus psittacinus

Araneus cyrtarachnoides relative Blue Bush Orb Weaver
A small orb weaver found in Brisbane, South East Queensland, probably present in lush areas all along the central section of eastern coastal Australia. It has a bright blue, sometimes greenish abdomen with a white streak, fringed with reddish brown, across the leading edge. The underneath is... 

Araneus dimidiatus

Araneus dimidiatus (Leaf Curling Araneus)
A common spider in coastal bushland. It hides in a curled leaf with the tips of its legs showing, similar to Phonognatha graeffei. Araneus dimidiatus... 

Araneus hamiltoni

Araneus hamiltoni (Hamilton's Orb Weaver)
A spider with strong similarities to Eriophora transmarina and other related Araneids, being medium-large with a wavy pattern on the back. The two ventral spots on the abdomen are like those of many other Araneus including A. rotundulus. Female to 8mm body length the male to 5mm. The abdominal pattern is very variable. Builds an orb web in low vegetation, by day usually hides nearby in a daytime... 

Araneus poltyoides

Araneus poltyoides Crysanthus, 1971 Long-scaped Araneus, Poltys-like Araneus
This spider is common throughout Australia, particularly in Queensland and the northern half of New South Wales, similar to the slightly smaller... 

Araneus rotundulus

'Araneus' rotundulus (Keyserling, 1887) Yellow Spotted Orb Weaver)
A small orb weaver species very common in coastal Queensland. Body length of females about 4mm, males 2-3mm. The female is very rotund, the male less so. The body is dark brown to black, with dots and other markings on the upper surface of the abdomen. The female has two prominent yellow dots on... 

Araneus species

Araneus species cf Araneus dimidiatus and Araneus mulierarius Live Leaf-curling Araneid
This is a new species in a yet to be established genus to which Araneus dimidiatus and Araneus mulierarius belong. All species are leaf-curlers. This species doesn't differ by the black patch at the back (which is very varialble in all species), but by the pattern of the shoulder in the abdomen. One of the frew groups of orb-weavers in which identification is easier by external... 

Araneus talipedatus

'Araneus' talipedatus (Keyserling, 1887) Slender Green Orb Weaver
An unusually green orb weaver, known from most parts of Australia. Adults seem to be active in the daytime and build a conventional orb web. The... 

'Araneus' transversus

'Araneus' transversus Rainbow, 1912 Not-quite-happy-face Orbweaver
Small orbweaver, female body length 4-6mm, in rainforest in South East Queensland, Sunshine Coast hinterland and perhaps elsewhere in moist, sub-tropical to tropical coastal habitats. The cephalothorax is green with yellow around the eye region, somewhat like Araneus praesignus to which it... 

Araneus collinus

Backobourkia collina (Keyserling, 1886)
Backobourkia collina is the most distinctive of all species in the genus. Males are easily diagnosed by their tiny size (body length < 3 mm) in comparison toB. brounii (body length > 5 mm) and B. heroine (body length > 6 mm). Abdominal patterns are unreliable. 

Araneus praesignus

Bijoaraneus praesignis (L. Koch, 1872) Alien Butt Spider
This pretty spider builds a small orb web in green shrubs at night, during the day hides in a retreat formed by binding a curved green leaf with silk. This retreat is probably also used for rearing young from eggs. The body length of the adult female up to 8 mm, male about 6 mm. Name changed from... 


Carepalxis bilobata Keyserling, 1886 Two-peaked Carepalxis
This spider is found from at least the Victorian border well into Queensland, a wider distribution than recorded by Keyserling who described It in... 

Carepalxis sp.

Carepalxis sp.
Carepalxis are not often collected or observed, as they are secretive spiders, hiding by day. They are active at night, making small orb webs. This... 

Cyclosa sp

Cyclosa insulana (Costa, 1834)
Cyclosa is very diverse in Australia with at least 10 species, currently under revision. At this stage it is not possible to reliably identify Australian Cyclosa to species, with the exception of a few such as C. trilobata, C. bacilliformis, and C. bifida. C. trilobata is a temperate spider first... 


Cyclosa sp
This small spider about 2mm long) was in a small roughly vertical web with no stabilimentum. The body shape also looks like that of Cyclosa.  

Cyclosa sp

Cyclosa sp Small silvery male
Possibly C. insulana or a relative this Cyclosa was about 2mm long and one stage off being adult. The palps are large but not defined with mature... 


Dolophones conifera (Keyserling, 1886) Wrap-around Spider
Wrap-around Spider is so named for its habit of wrapping itself around a twig or flattening itself against bark. The upper surface of the abdomen resembles a cone shaped shield. It is composed mostly of a series of roughly circular discs each with a small slit in the centre. The lower surface of... 

Dolophones macleayi

Dolophones macleayi (Bradley, 1876) Macleay's Dolophones
Dolophones macleayi was first named Tholia macleayi by Bradley in 1876, pubished in "The araneids of the Chevert Expedition. Part I. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales". This possible juvenile matches the photo in Mascord 1980. Body length about 3mm. Collected mid June... 


Dolophones sp
A Dolophones male, rather large, being about 10, maybe 12mm body length. It was observed combing out silk with its fourth pair of legs. Location: The Gap. Thanks to Dr Robert Raven for confirmation of the genus.  

Dolophones turrigera

Dolophones turrigera (L. Koch, 1867) Turreted Wrap-around Spider
This spider is another wrap-around Araneid in the day, making a web at night. The female when adult is around 8 mm, the male being smaller, usually... 

Novakiella species

Hortophora sp cf Novakiella
A medium to large sized Araneid, males to 9mm, females possibly larger. The spine on the tibia of leg two and general appearance is similar to Novakiella species. The lack of the dotted colouration of the legs and the presence of complicated sclerites on the underside of the male palps... 


Hortophora species Green Araneid cf Hortophora biapicata
A medium-sized, bright-green Araneid collected on Obi Obi Creek near Kenilworth, Queensland. This could be a colour variation of Hortophora biapicata or one of its closely allied species. Body length of this female about 5mm. Somewhat more triangular than Araneus eburnus and less triangular and peaked than Araneus arenaceus. There are many spiders like this that may belong to described species or may be variations within a known species. Only close examination of the... 

Eriophora transmarina Garden Orb Weaver

Hortophora transmarina (Keyserling, 1865) Garden Orb Weaver)
A large, powerful and robust orb weaver with a triangular abdomen, widespread across eastern coastal Australia, common in gardens. Also recorded from Perth, coastal north-west Western Australia and coastal Northern Territory. Females to 30mm, usually around 20-25mm. Males also large, to 25mm. Variable in colour and pattern, can be grey, brown, orange, reddish or black, with spots, stripes, and... 

Larinia phthisica

Larinia phthisica (L. Koch) Atrophied Larinia
A slender orb weaver widespread throughout australia and Paua New Guinea, found in all states and territories with the possible exception of Tasmania... 

Neoscona sp.  Araneus inustus

Neoscona sp. possibly Araneus inustus
A Neoscona sp. yet to be revised and renamed, possibly currently known as Araneus inustus. This spider is common in the flowering... 

Novakiella trituberculosa

Novakiella trituberculosa (Roewer, 1942) Common Novakiella
This rather gentle and timid spider, males to 6mm, females possibly larger, is common in most habitats throughout Australia and New Zealand, but not commonly collected. The spine on the tibia of leg two and the dotted colouration of the legs give the male of the species away, otherwise it... 

Araneidae Araneinae Parawixia dehaanii

Parawixia dehaanii (Doleschall 1859) Abandoned-web Orb Weaver
A large, highly variable tropical orbweaver related to the Eriophora group of orb weavers, in gardens, disturbed areas and nearby bushland. 

Araneus bradleyi

Plebs bradleyi (Keyserling, 1887) Enamelled Spider
The Enamelled Spider is common in Tasmania, New South Wales and Victoria and parts of Queensland. It waits for prey in its sloping web at night and... 

Araneus cyphoxis

Plebs cyphoxis Simon, 1908 Western Bush Orb Weaver
This spider is common in southwest Western Australia into South Australia. The female is medium sized and has the typical 'Plebs' pattern on... 

Araneus eburnus

Plebs eburnus (Keyserling 1886) Bush Orb Weaver
A very common small to medium sized spider with colourful markings found in dry scrub in eastern Australia, especially coastal Queensland. The female builds a vertical orb web and stays there day and night. The web of some of these spiders has been seen to be decorated with nearly vertical... 

Poltys illepidus

Poltys illepidus C. L. Koch, 1843 Tree Stump Spider
Poltys is a distinctive araneid genus recognized by widely separated lateral eyes and a pear-shaped carapace where the "stalk" of the pear is... 

Araneidae Araneinae Poltys laciniosus

Poltys laciniosus Keyserling, 1886 Wrapped-up Twig Spider
A widespread species of orbweaver, males tiny, found in most parts of Australia though rare in Victoria and not found in Tasmania. It extends inland... 

Poltys milledgei

Poltys milledgei Smith, 2006 Milledge's Poltys
Poltys milledgei is part of a Poltys columnaris group whose representatives are mostly found north of Australia. There are only two... 

Poltys noblei

Poltys noblei Smith, 2006 John Nobel's Poltys
A medium sized to large female with a smaller male, twig like in concealment mode, with a wide variety of body shapes within the species. Poltys noblei is one of the Poltys in the P. laciniosus group and shares many characteristics with P. laciniosus. Its range is the... 


Poltys sp. (Twig Spider)
This spider, probably Poltys laciniosus, has excellent camouflage when resting on bark surfaces because of the way it draws its legs up tightly against the carapace, the shape of its body, and the colouration. The eyes are on a short stalk. Thanks to Helen M. Smith author of revision of the... 

Araneus brisbanae

Salsa brisbanae (L. Koch, 1867) Brisbane Orb Weaver
This speciesbelongs in the Salsa group. It occurs mostly in Queensland and NSW with a few records from Victoria and Tasmania. The mature... 


Salsa fuliginata group
This common orb-weaving species, transferred to Cyclosa by Dondale in 1966, is not really a Cyclosa. It belongs to a new genus... 

Eriophora pustulosa

Socca (was Eriophora) pustulosa (Walckenaer, 1841) Knobbled Orbweaver
An extremely widespread, medium-sized orbweaver across most of southern Australia and nearby places including New Zealand where it is one of the most... 


Zealaranea crassa (Walckenaer, 1842) Fat Orb Weaver
Zealaranea crassa is a widely distributed orb weaver found on hedges or amongst gorse and manuka scrub, is greyish brown with a prominent... 


View My Stats