New spider family discovered in Oregon cave, called Trogloraptor spider for being a ‘cave robber’ (Photo)

By on Aug 18, 2012 in Animals, United States Comments

A new spider species was recently discovered in a cave in Oregon, which has huge claws and light brown in color, as shown in the photo below. It is being believed to be the first new family of spiders to be found in North America since the 1890s.

Male Trogloraptor spider
Image Credit: Charles Griswold/ZooKeys

As noted at Telegraph on Saturday, August 18, 2012, the new spider, which has been formally called Trogloraptor marchingtoni, measures up to 3 inches (8 centimeters) across with its legs outstretched; and scientists who found the new insect believe that it hunts food by hanging from strands of silk from the cave roof.

According to the study, which was published on ZooKeys journal on Friday, the Trogloraptor spider got its name from Douglas County sheriff’s deputy Neil Marchington and a member of the Western Cave Conservancy, who first discovered the spider in the cave; while its genus name, Trogloraptor, means “cave robber.”

“For a spider, this is a pretty big one. In the torchlight it can look even bigger. It has remarkable claws and feet which are like scythes or hooks. We think these work to snap and trap their prey.” Charles Griswold, curator of Arachnology at the California Academy of Sciences and study lead author, was quoted in the report.

“They live in caves and make a few strands of silk from which they hang from the ceiling. They hang legs in air in dark and wait for their prey to come by. We have never seen them eat or catch their prey.” Griswold added, who also helped in the identification of the new spider.

female Trogloraptor spider
Female Trogloraptor spider
Image Credit: Charles Griswold/ZooKeys

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