Atypidae  Thorell, 1870 / Atypus  Latreille, 1804   3 species

Atypus affinis  Eichwald, 1830


Palp male: with longitudinal depression on femur. Males mostly black. Vulva with 2 pairs of receptacula seminis in the same line. Prosoma female: yellow-brown to black. Sternum with bright median area. First pair of sigilla more than one diameter apart from margin of sternum. Legs female: yellow-brown to black. Metatarsus IV male: dorsally without spines. Tarsus male: always bright. Posterior spinnerets distinctly 3 segmented (in dorsal and ventral view). Opisthosoma female: often completely bright.

Body length male: 7-9 mm
Body length female: 10-15 mm
Additional information

In dry, open pinewoods and heathland, in south-exposed dry meadows and on rocky slopes, up to 500 m. Capture tube over ground 12-17 cm, retreat tube under ground 20-45 cm, diameter up to 13 mm. Colonies of up to 200 specimens at densities of up to 90 individuals/m2. Cocoons with 30-160 eggs at the lower end of tube, mature after 4 years, adult males in late autumn. Females up to 8 years old. In contrast to the females, males can walk around and can be captured e.g. in pitfall traps.

This species can bite humans. Pain has been described as a light burning sensation with some associated local redness, disappearing soon.

Frequency: Widely distributed

  No data
Global distribution (WSC 2022): Europe (Ireland to Ukraine), North Africa
 male  female
Distribution List
Albania   (Vrenozi & Jäger, 2012) ||| Algeria   (Bosmans, unpubl.) ||| Austria   (no references) ||| Belarus   (Ivanov, 2013) ||| Belgium   (no references) ||| Bosnia and Herzegovina   (Komnenov, 2010) ||| Bulgaria   (Blagoev et al., 2018) ||| Croatia   (no references) ||| Czechia   (no references) ||| Denmark   (no references) ||| France   (no references) ||| Germany   (no references) ||| Hungary   (Samu & Szinetár, 1999) ||| Ireland  Removed (Nolan, 2020; Lavery, 2019) ||| Italy   (Pantini & Isaia, 2019) ||| Luxembourg   (Kreuels et al., 2019) ||| Moldova   (no references) ||| Morocco   (Bosmans, unpubl.) ||| Netherlands   (no references) ||| North Macedonia   (no references) ||| Poland   (no references) ||| Portugal   (Branco et al., 2019) ||| Serbia   (no references) ||| Slovakia   (no references) ||| Slovenia   (Kostanjšek & Kuntner, 2015) ||| Spain   (Branco et al., 2019) ||| Spain / Balearic Islands   (Branco et al., 2019) ||| Sweden   (Kronestedt, 2001) ||| Switzerland   (no references) ||| Ukraine   (no references) ||| United Kingdom   (Lavery, 2019) |||

Blagoev G, Deltshev C, Lazarov S, Naumova M (2018) The spiders (Araneae) of Bulgaria. Version: August 2018. National Museum of Natural History, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences. Online at (accessed on 10.9.2018) pdf

Bosmans R. (unpubl.) Provisional list of spiders of North Africa. Database excerpt Aug. 2019

Branco V V, Morano E, Cardoso P (2019) An update to the Iberian spider checklist (Araneae). Zootaxa 4614: 201-254 pdf

Brændegaard J (1966) Edderkopper: Eller Spindlere I Danmarks Fauna 72: 1-224 pdf

Emerit M (1984) Les glandes tibiales des Telemidae: une structure inédite localisée sur l'appendice locomoteur des araignées. Comptes Rendus Hebdomadaires des Séances de l'Académie des Sciences Paris (3) 299: 1-4 pdf

Ivanov V V (2013) The checklist of Belarusian spiders (Arachnida, Araneae). Zoology and Ecology 4: 293-311 pdf

Komnenov M (2010) Checklist of spiders (Araneae) of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Uzizaž i Biospeld 5(2009): 52-69 pdf

Kostanjšek R, Kuntner M (2015) Araneae Sloveniae: a national spider species checklist. ZooKeys 474: 1-91 pdf

Kraus O, Baur H (1974) Die Atypidae der West-Paläarktis. Systematik, Verbreitung und Biologie (Arach.: Araneae). Abhandlungen und Verhandlungen des Naturwissenschaftlichen Vereins in Hamburg (NF) 17: 85-116 pdf

Kreuels M, Staudt A, Christian S (2019) Die Spinnenfauna von Luxemburg – eine Zusammenstellung der Nachweise aus den Jahren 1906-2018 (Arachnida: Araneae). Bulletin de la Société des naturalistes luxembourgeois 121: 203-230 pdf

Kronestedt T (2001) Checklist of Spiders (Araneae) in Sweden [Preliminary version February 2001] pdf

Lavery A (2019) A revised checklist of the spiders of Great Britain and Ireland. Arachnology 18: 196-212 pdf

Locket G H, Millidge A F (1951) British spiders. Vol. I. Ray Society, London, 310 pp. pdf

Loksa I (1969) Pokok I-Araneae I. Fauna Hungariae 97: 1-133 pdf

Miller F (1947) Pavoucí zvírena hadcových stepí u Mohelna. Archiv Svazu na Výzkum a Ochranu Přírody i Krajiny v Zemi Moravskoslezské 7: 1-107 pdf

Nentwig W, Gnädinger M, Fuchs J, Ceschi A (2013) A two year study of verified spider bites in Switzerland and a review of the European spider bite literature. Toxicon 73: 104-110 pdf

Nolan M (2020) Notes on ‘Irish’ spiders (Arachnida): Atypus affinis Eichwald (Atypidae) and Entelecara errata O. P.-Cambridge (Linyphiidae) removed from the Irish list; Cryptachaea blattea (Urquhart) (Theridiidae) new to Ireland. Bulletin of the Irish Biogeographical Society 44: 189-204 pdf

Pantini P, Isaia M (2019) the online catalog of Italian spiders, with addenda on other arachnid orders occurring in Italy (Arachnida: Araneae, Opiliones, Palpigradi, Pseudoscorpionida, Scorpiones, Solifugae). Fragmenta Entomologica 51: 127-152 pdf

Samu F, Szinetár C (1999) Bibliographic check list of the Hungarian spider fauna. Bulletin of the British Arachnological Society 11: 161-184 pdf

Schwendinger P J (1990) A synopsis of the genus Atypus (Araneae, Atypidae). Zoologica Scripta 19: 353-366 pdf

Vrenozi B, Jäger P (2012) A faunistic study on ground-dwelling spiders (Araneae) in the Tirana district, Albania. Arachnologische Mitteilungen 44: 81-87 pdf

WSC (2022) World Spider Catalog. Version 23.5. Natural History Museum Bern, online at (21.07.2022) doi: 10.24436/2 pdf

16-11-2020 Distribution update Detail
08-06-2020 Distribution update Detail
06-05-2020 Distribution insert Detail
27-08-2019 Distribution update Detail
26-11-2013 Datasheet update Detail