BioRisk 4: 131-147, doi: 10.3897/biorisk.4.48
Spiders (Araneae). Chapter 7.3
Wolfgang Nentwig, Manuel Kobelt
Abstract A total of 47 spider species are alien to Europe; this corresponds to 1.3 % of the native spider fauna. They belong to (in order of decreasing abundance) Theridiidae (10 species), Pholcidae (7 species), Sparassidae, Salticidae, Linyphiidae, Oonopidae (4-5 species each) and 11 further families. There is a remarkable increase of new records in the last years and the arrival of one new species for Europe per year has been predicted for the next decades. One third of alien spiders have an Asian origin, one fifth comes from North America and Africa each. 45 % of species may originate from temperate habitats and 55 % from tropical habitats. In the past banana or other fruit shipments were an important pathway of introduction; today potted plants and probably container shipments in general are more important. Most alien spiders established in and around human buildings, only few species established in natural sites. No environmental impact of alien species is known so far, but some alien species are theoretically dangerous to humans.