In Fossil and Extant Spiders (Araneae) - Fossile und Heutige Spinnen mainly fossil spiders (Araneae) are treated but also numerous extant taxa, including the first descriptions of some families, a large paper on the strange spiders in Cretaceous ambers, a voluminous paper on fossil and extant combfooted spiders (family Theridiidae), and others e.g. on the European jumping spiders (Salticidae), on the Zoridae/Liocranidae, and on subtaxa in spiders.
Fossil resins and their organic inclusions are like "windows to the past": The "footprints" of spider evolution can be traced back until the dinosaur era, 140 million years ago. More than one thousand drawings, and almost four hundred colour photos demonstrate the diversity of fossil spiders which are preserved in Cretaceous and Tertiary ambers. Parts of the – in geological sense – oldest capture webs of spiders and their prey are described and illustrated. Especially Cretaceous spiders provide surprising findings on the evolution of spiders. Conclusions are drawn on the camouflage and the mating behaviour of fossil spiders, based on peculiar structures.
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