Velvet Spiders

The velvet spider is a family known as Eresidae. The family is divided into 9 genera including around 130 species. The female spiders are known to sacrifice their lives for the care of their offspring.

Spiders Belonging to this Family


A. algarvensis A. algerica A. fimbriata


Dorceus albolunulatus Dorceus fastuosus Dorceus latifrons
Dorceus quadrispilotus Dorceus trianguliceps


Dresserus aethiopicus Dresserus angusticeps Dresserus armatus
Dresserus bilineatus Dresserus collinus Dresserus colsoni
Dresserus darlingi Dresserus elongatus Dresserus fontensis
Dresserus fuscus Dresserus kannemeyeri Dresserus laticeps
Dresserus murinus Dresserus namaquensis Dresserus nasivulvus
Dresserus nigellus Dresserus obscurus Dresserus olivaceus
Dresserus rostratus Dresserus schreineri Dresserus schultzei
Dresserus sericatus Dresserus subarmatus Dresserus tripartitus


Eresus albopictus Eresus bifasciatus Eresus crassitibialis
Eresus granosus Eresus hermani Eresus lavrosiae
Eresus moravicus Eresus pharaonis Eresus robustus
Eresus rotundiceps Eresus ruficapillus Eresus sandaliatus
Eresus sedilloti Eresus solitarius
Eresus kollari Subspecies: Eresus k. frontalis, Eresus k. ignicomis, Eresus k. latefasciatus, Eresus k. tricolor
Eresus walckenaeri Subspecies: Eresus w. moerens


Gandanameno echinata Gandanameno fumosa Gandanameno inornata
Gandanameno purcelli Gandanameno spenceri


L. annulipes L. colleni L. lucasi


Paradonea parva Paradonea presleyi Paradonea splendens
Paradonea striatipes Paradonea variegata


Seothyra barnardi Seothyra dorstlandica Buck spoor spider
Seothyra griffinae Seothyra neseri Seothyra perelegans
Seothyra roshensis Seothyra annettae Seothyra longipedata
Seothyra schreineri Seothyra semicoccinea Seothyra henscheli
Seothyra louwi


Stegodyphus africanus Stegodyphus bicolor Stegodyphus dufouri
Stegodyphus dumicola Stegodyphus hildebrandti Stegodyphus hisarensis
Stegodyphus lineatus Stegodyphus lineifrons Stegodyphus manaus
Stegodyphus manicatus African social velvet spider Stegodyphus mirandus
Stegodyphus nathistmus Stegodyphus pacificus Stegodyphus sabulosus
Indian cooperative spider Stegodyphus simplicifrons Stegodyphus tentoriicola
Stegodyphus tibialis Stegodyphus tingelin

Physical Description and Identification


Size: The average size of female velvet spiders range from 0.47-0.59 in (12-15 mm), although the figure might vary, depending on each species.

Color: Bright colors like black, brown or sometimes gray are observed on almost all species. Ladybird spiders have an orange-colored body with black spots.

Other Characteristic Features: The hair is so glossy and thick that it looks like velvet, and hence the name velvet is given. Also, female spiders of this family exhibit genital plate, forming subgroup entelegyne spiders.


Female velvet spiders lay eggs in a sac.


Spiderlings take some time for incubation, and when they come out, their mother’s tissues had already been broken down. The young spiders follow matriphagy by consuming the corpse of their mother.

The Web

The velvet spiders make webs, cluttered with the debris of herbal stuff and sand. The web is similar to a silken tube made of wooly silk, sizing around 3.9 in (10 cm), tucked inside burrows or crevices.

Are Velvet Spiders Venomous

The velvet spider is not likely to be venomous for human. However, there is a possibility that it has some venom, potent for killing insects.

Quick Facts

Lifespan Around 5 years
Distribution Eurasia and Africa
Habitat Burrows, underground of deserts and rainforests, neo tropical areas, Afrotropical realm
Web Type Orb Web
Diet Insects

Did You Know

  • The spiders are “cribellate”, meaning they have certain spinnerets known as “cribellum”, for making the web.