Subject: Possible trapdoor spider?
Location: Eastern Kentucky
April 11, 2017 2:29 pm
I was pulling up clumps of ornamental grass from a raised bed and noticed a white “sack” that came up on the roots of one clump. There was a tear on one side of the sack and I could see a large, dark, shiny spider inside. While I was trying to figure out what to do about it, I noticed tiny spiders crawling out of the sack. (The second image shows them.) I’m assuming they were her babies. I left her there with the youngsters while I finished cleaning the raised bed. When I came back, she had crawled out of the nest and was walking across the deck. I encouraged her to move where she wouldn’t be stepped on and put the clump of grass and nest beside her. I went back later, but she was nowhere to be seen. I’ve checked the images here on whatsthatbug and I think she’s a trapdoor spider.
Signature: Kentucky Gin
Dear Kentucky Gin,
We agree that this is a Trapdoor Spider, probably a female Cork-Lid Trapdoor Spider in the genus Ummidia based on this BugGuide image. According to BugGuide: “Dig tunnel in ground and seal with a silk-hinged lid. They hide under this lid and make forays out when prey is sensed, presumably by vibration. Males are often found wandering in late spring, presumably looking for mates.” Because of your gentle kindness in relocating this little lady, we are tagging this posting with the Bug Humanitarian Award.