Spiders in Germany - an overview

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People who do not like spiders usually do not want to know anything about spiders. The pure involvement with the spiders can help to reduce much of the fear of the spiders. In order to seduce you to read, if you can not win anything from the spiders, we start our overview very gently with the nice side of the spiders:
Useful spiders
Yes, there are quite nice spiders, more specifically, all spiders are useful. And not one of the German spider species is so poisonous that it could be life threatening to a human being in any way. On the contrary, there are almost no incidents known where it actually came to complaints due to a spider bite.
Domestic spiders do not like to bite, but behave like bees and wasps: "You do not harm me, I do not harm you!" Only if they are in a hopeless and life-threatening situation, they will risk an attack. But their purpose in life is really not geared to that. Spiders fulfill important tasks in our shared environment.
They keep the populations of the most diverse insects in balance, for example by B. catch in their nets. The nets are made of spider threads, which researchers around the world consider to be true miracle constructions. The threads that produce the spiders are very thin, but still extremely tear-resistant and also elastic, so far no one has succeeded in producing threads of the same quality.
The nets are sophisticated fishing gear, with the help of the subtle spiders can even recognize whether prey or enemies approach. Even though their brains are as small as the point at the end of this sentence, spiders make their network constructions more effective as they get older - so they are capable of learning.
Some types of spiders have even developed completely new types of nets, nets between the front legs z. B., spinning balls on a single thread, trip ropes or trap doors that also keep enemies. Other spiders hunt without a net, jumping spiders simply jump their prey and water hunt spiders dive for her, they can stay under water for up to half an hour and dive dry again.
These amazing skills also bring amazing results in insect hunting. Not a world with spiders, but a world without spiders would be the real scare for us: Scientists have calculated that only the German spiders capture about 4.5 million tons of insects each year. If all spiders in Germany were to take a one-year hunt break, these 4.5 million tons would be distributed over the soil to yield a layer at least 10 cm high. It is likely that the Spinnenverächter would not like to walk on such a layer.
Domestic spiders
Scientifically, only the animals of the order Araneae, the weaving spiders, are real spiders. In colloquial language, however, other animals of the superordinate class of arachnids (arachnida) are also referred to as spiders, namely all spider-like animals from other Arachnid orders, for example the Weberknecht. He belongs actually in the own order of the Weberknechte with at least 4,000 kinds.
With the webspiders, any interested biologist but also enough spiders to keep busy, currently there are just over 42,000 species discovered in about 110 families worldwide.
Accordingly, there are also countless species of spiders in Europe, which split into nearly 60 families with over 600 genera. If you want to get more involved with the spiders in Germany, for beginners, the Spinnen-Forum-Wiki is recommended, which was set up by arachnologically interested members of the Forum of Central European Spiders (wiki.spinnen-forum.de). Here you will find lists of German spider names, lists of spiders that are found in and on buildings, you can also lead by basic features or particularly striking features step by step through the world of our spiders. If that does not help, you can of course also directly in the forum.spinnen-forum.de make a request.
A very exciting website about the Araneae maintains the Swiss University of Bern, araneae.unibe.ch, Here you can pinpoint the spiders on your hand, by taxon or family key (describing different body characteristics), there is also a list of families and genera and a phenomenal photo gallery. However, this page is only easy to understand for biologists.
Toxic and annoying spiders
In the tropics, there are really spiders whose bites can kill you when things are going badly. But even most poisonous spiders are extremely peaceful, so it's pretty hard to be bitten at all. Others are much more harmless than their reputation, a tarantula will be z. For example, do not manage to kill you.Of course, the physical constitution also plays a role in the poison effect, but if one assumes normal circumstances, there are no "poison spiders" in the sense in Germany.
Three native spider species are considered to be weakly toxic, the spider (Araneus diadematus), the water spider (Argyroneta aquatica) and the thorn finger (Cheiracantium punctorium), which occurs only in very warm areas of Germany (eg at the Kaiserstuhl). He also lives very hidden, so he usually does not touch people. The bite of a spider hurts like a bee sting. If it catches very tender skin, it may have a toxic effect with swelling and temporary paralysis of the bite site.
Since a spider, however, does not leave a bothersome sting, unlike the bee, cooling envelopes are sufficient for treatment. The bite of the water spider is similarly uncomfortable, but much less likely, as water spiders stay in mud waters where they seldom come in contact with humans.
The thorn finger is the most poisonous spider with us, its bite leads to poisoning symptoms with first burning pain at the bite site. Swelling, nausea, headache, vomiting and increased body temperature can also occur, but usually the symptoms disappear after a few days. The bite site may be swollen or reddened for a long time. After biting through a thorn finger, a visit to a doctor is recommended for more severe symptoms.

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