Brown tube spiders

Arbanitis species, family Idiopidae

Trapdoor spider, Idiopidae, Misgolas, male Tube web spider, Idiopidae, Arbanitis, tube on sapling Tube extending above ground, attached to a sapling.


Like the Brisbane Trapdoor Spider, a narrow-headed brown spider with light coloured hairs on the head and dark brown or mottled body. The lighter coloured legs are also quite slender but are all dark.

Diversity & distribution

Coastal eastern Australia from Cape Tribulation to Tasmania and South Australia.

Usually two or three similar species occur in one area and are restricted to that area. The species are presently recognisable only by the examination of adult males. 


The burrow is open, without a door. The entrance is lined with dead leaves bound to the wall with silk. In some species, the burrow extends well above the ground as a tube and is attached to the lower parts of the stems of small saplings.


No bites have been recorded; not believed to be dangerous.

Similar Species

Shelf-door trapdoors (Cataxia species) are black or very dark spiders like the Brown tube spiders but they make a soft rudimentary door that drops like a shelf from the entrance; the spider hunts from that . No leaves are used in the burrow entrance. They usually build their burrows usually in the soft rotting bark of standing or fallen dead trees in rainforest. At least six species are known from Queensland to Victoria and none are considered dangerous.

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