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Literature review: Hoppspindlar i Sverige – En Fälthandbok [Jumpings spiders in Sweden – A Field Guide] (by Gabriella Gelland & Monika Sunhede)



Newsletter of the British Arachnological Society No. 156, Spring 2023
ISSN 0959-2261
Book Review: Hoppspindlar I Sverige En Fälthandbok
[Jumping Spiders in Sweden A Field Guide] by
Gabriella Gelland and Monika Sunhede
Dmitri V. Logunov
The Manchester Museum, UK and Zoological Institute of the Russian
Academy of Sciences, St. Petersburg, Russia; e-mail:
It is with great pleasure that I present a new colourful field
guide to the 48 species of jumping spiders found in Sweden,
which has just been published by the Entomological Society
of Stockholm. The book was compiled by two authors:
Gabriella Gelland wrote the main text, and Monika Sunhede
provided the majority of live photos, diagrams (both B/W
and colour), and also edited all illustrations. For the salticids
for which the authors did not have their own photos, they
used additional photos obtained from 28 authors (p. 206), of
whom Sami Karjalainen, Michael Shäfer, Ludwig Jansen,
Pierre Oger, Ari Kainelainen and David Andersson were
particularly acknowledged (p. 7). In addition, artist Matthias
Starkenberg prepared colourful drawings of the habitus and
copulatory organs of all species covered in the book (pp. 58
The book starts with the contents (pp. 45), followed
by a foreword written by the famous Swedish arachnologist
Torbjorn Kronestedt (p. 3). After this, the authors present
their own foreword (p. 6) and an acknowledgements section
(p. 7). The following section (pp. 838) is called About
Jumping Spidersand is devoted to the taxonomic position of
salticids, their morphology, anatomy, life cycle (i.e., stages of
ontogenetic development), and biology (jumping and hunting
technique, foraging, mating, enemies, etc.). Methods for
collecting, preserving, photographing, and identifying
salticids are covered in the next section Study of Jumping
Spiders (pp. 3954). The process of identification of
jumping spiders is described in detail and presented in eight
distinct steps (p. 46). The authors refer to both the male and
female copulatory organs, and body colour features for the
taxa illustrated in the next section Species and Genera(pp.
5577). All the morphological terms used are clearly
explained and illustrated. For instance, the body shape could
be compact (K-komp), normal (K-norm), cylindrical (K-cyl)
or elongated-pointed (K-spets) (p. 71); or the colour pattern
of dorsum could be solid black (B-svart), with several
longitudinal stripes (B-längs), clear light spots (B-parf) (p.
73), and so on. The body length and carapace colour patterns
(dorsal, front and eye field) are described and structured in
the same way, allowing the authors to provide individual
species code combinations(pp. 7577) separately for males
and females. This makes perfect sense, as many salticids
demonstrate clear sexual colour dimorphism. Such species
codes make it easy and rather straightforward to identify a
species, and then verify the identification by checking against
additional live photographs or examining illustrations of the
copulatory organs. I am not sure if this method will allow one
to distinguish salticid species in larger faunas, but in the case
of the relatively small Swedish fauna, it looks ideal for
introducing non-specialists to such a taxonomically complex
group as the Salticidae.
The main section of the book, Species
Descriptions(pp. 80199), is devoted to individual accounts
of all 48 native salticid species. Each account includes the
following details: distribution in Sweden (with a map based
on all the latest sightings and records), habitat, search tips
(for some, but not all, species), general appearance from
different views complemented with a set of live photos of
both sexes, and a reference to other related Swedish species
(if any). For genera with more than one species in the
Swedish fauna, e.g. Attulus (eight species) or Heliophanus
(seven species), species descriptions are preceded by a
selection of comparative live photographs of all species,
clearly marked and annotated to show distinguishing colour
features. This is an ideal way of identifying salticids by body
colour alone, provided such species are distinguishable (it is
impossible in some genera, e.g. Talavera). All genera and
species have common Swedish names, of which many, by the
authors' own admission, were created based on their
observations and discussions. For instance, the genus
Evarcha is called Katthoppspindlar Cat Jumping Spiders,
whereas individual species are presented as: E. arcuata
Bandit Jumping Spider (Banditthoppspindel, due to its face
colour pattern resembles a bandit eye mask), E. falcata
Broken Jumping Spider (Brokhoppspindel, named after its
black colour pattern on dorsum), and E. laetabunda Lynx
Jumping Spider (Lohoppspindel, because the male colour
pattern resembles that of a lynx).
The book concludes with a brief overview of eight
introduced salticid species (pp. 200201), some tips for
furthering ones knowledge of spiders (p. 202), a glossary of
terms (pp. 203205), Credits to Photographs (p. 206), and
an index (pp. 207208).
In conclusion, the book has made a very good
impression on me. It is a bit of a pity that it is not written in
English, which would have increased its audience
considerably. However, even for those who do not
understand Swedish, the book will still be a very useful
identification guide to the Salticidae of Sweden, and
Scandinavia in general. The book is printed to a high quality
and is exceptionally good value for money. I highly
recommend it to both amateur and professional arachnologists
208 pages, full colour, 20.5 ´ 13.5 cm. Soft cover.
Publisher: Entomological Society of Stockholm, Bulls Graphics,
2022; in Swedish; ISBN: 978-91-527-3438-4. Obtainable from
Natur butiken; cost 85 Swedish Kronas (c. £7) plus p&p. Details
online at:
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