Trapdoor Spider

Bothriocyrtum californicum

A large spider, often over an inch long, digs her burrow with her muscular forelegs and spiny mouthparts and lines the walls with a smooth sheet of silk. Then she holds the hinged door closed with her fangs. When an insect ambles by, the trap door opens, and the spider snatches her meal. Her trapdoor is virtually impossible to pry open, but the Striped Skunk will simply dig up the burrow and eat the occupant.

Fun Fact:
A quarter-sized manhole in the ground gives away the burrow of a female Trapdoor Spider.

What’s for Lunch:
A ground-dwelling insect that happens by the trap

Where’s Home:
Clay soils in coastal sage scrub