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Grass Spiders/Funnel Weavers

Funnel weaver spiders Agelenidae, closely resemble wolf spiders because they have the same stripe on their cephalothorax and abdomen.  They can usually be distinguished from wolf spiders because wolf spiders do not build webs.  Funnel weavers are also usually lighter in build than wolf spiders and have elongated spinnerets.  Many common funnel weaver are also characterized by having very bristly legs.  Most are brown, with gray, black, and tan markings.  All spiders in this family have 8 eyes. Like all spiders, funnel weavers have 8 legs, 2 body parts (cephalothorax and abdomen), and no antennae.

These spiders are commonly called "Grass Spiders" because they build funnel-shaped webs close to the ground in the grass.  The spider hides in the narrow end of this funnel, which is usually protected by leaves or rocks.  When an insect, spider, or other small creature crosses the wide end of the funnel, the spider feels the vibration and rushes out to grab the prey.  Funnel weaver and grass spiders are incredibly quick, and can dash from the protected part of their web to the other end at lightning speed. Funnel weaver and grass spiders are beneficial predators.  They very rarely leave their webs, so they don't often enter homes.  

Like all spiders, funnel weavers and grass spiders go through a simple metamorphosis. Young funnel weavers and grass spiders hatch from eggs and look like tiny adults.  They shed their skin as they grow.

Information and pictures were taken from children's projects and where credited to that child does not claim to be original information. Where possible, permission to reproduce has been sought. Any infringement of copyright is purely unintentional.

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