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Hood Spiders

Appearance: Brown or mottled markings, blends into its surroundings. They are usually an inch to three inches in size. Body is covered with soft hairs. The hairs on the legs leave tiny red marks on the skin, where the "toothed" hairs on the spiders' feet have clung to the skin.

Habitat: Hood Spiders construct burrows lined by their silk and closed by a hinged door of silk, moss, and soil. There they lie in wait for passing prey, usually an insect, when the prey touches silken threads radiating out on the ground near the door, the spiders quickly opens the door and seize it. They also use their burrows for protection and as nest sites. They are common prey to birds, Cliff Climbers, Snakekillers and sometimes other spiders.

Life-Cycle: The female spins her egg sac for about 300 eggs in the burrow. A group of spiders is called a clutch. Young Hood Spiders stay in the burrow with their mother for some time. Since their burrow is in the ground it is liable to flood, when a rare rainfall occurs. A turret built around the entrance keeps out water and if the burrow is flooded, the spider climbs to a chamber built to the side to try and survive until the water recedes. It is also know to admit a soft whistling sound, which most likely is used to attract mates. Life spans of the Hood Spider is 3 to 5 years with it hibernating in its burrow during the winter.

Venom: The venom of Hood Spider is used to paralyze its prey and not usually fatal. The sting may cause causes mild pain and swelling.