trapdoor spider, burrow-dwelling spider of the Old and New Worlds. Trapdoor spiders dig burrows, which they line with silk and protect by constructing one or two circular, hinged trapdoors. The spiders emerge through the snug-fitting camouflaged doors to search for prey. Usually the burrow entrance has a door, the outer surface of which is camouflaged to blend in with the surrounding terrain. If a second door is present, it is usually below the entrance door. Trapdoor spiders are classified in the phylum Arthropoda, class Arachnida, order Araneae, family Ctenizidae.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
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