Walnut Orb Weaver - Nuctenea umbratica

    Alternative names
    Toad Spider

    Size: females can grow to 15 mm, males grow to 11 mm. They have a distinctive flattened body, which enable the species to hide in crevices. The walnut colouration of the abdomen gives the species its common name. The darker central portion with zig-zag edges is also typical of the species.

    Identification difficulty

    The Walnut Orb Spider hides away during the day in nooks and crannies or under bark, close to its web and it only emerges to secure any prey that gets trapped in the web.

    When to see it

    Females of this species can be found all year round, whilst the males are usually seen in summer.

    Life History

    After dark, it will emerge to construct a new web each evening and can then be seen sitting at the centre of its web waiting for its next meal - hence it has another common name of 'The Evening Spider'.

    UK Status

    Common and widespread in Britain.

    VC55 Status

    Common in Leicestershire and Rutland.

    Further Information

    4,942 British records for this species to 2015.

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    Leicestershire & Rutland Map

    MAP KEY:

    Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
    Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

    UK Map