- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Arthropoda
- Class: Arachnida
- Order: Araneae
- Suborder: Araneomorphae
- Family: Gnaphosidae
- Genus: Herpyllus
- Species: Herpyllus ecclesiasticus
Common Name (AAS)
Other Common Names
Eastern Parson Spider (because there is a different, but nearly identical, species in the west), Ground Spider, Stealthy Ground Spider
Nicholas Marcellus Hentz, 1832
There have been 121 confirmed sightings of Herpyllus ecclesiasticus (Eastern Parson Spider), with the most recent sighting submitted on August 4, 2023 by Spider ID member ap2649. The detailed statistics below may not utilize the complete dataset of 121 sightings because of certain Herpyllus ecclesiasticus sightings reporting incomplete data.
- Web: 2% of the time, Herpyllus ecclesiasticus spiders are sighted in a spider web (Sample size: 121)
- Sex: 0 female and 0 male.
- Environment: Herpyllus ecclesiasticus has been sighted 3 times outdoors, and 118 times indoors.
- Outdoors: Man-made structure (3).
Location and Range
Herpyllus ecclesiasticus (Eastern Parson Spider) has been sighted in the following countries: Canada, United States.
Herpyllus ecclesiasticus has also been sighted in the following states: Alabama, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington, D.C., West Virginia, Wisconsin.
Herpyllus ecclesiasticus has been primarily sighted during the month of May.
- January: 8
- February: 9
- March: 21
- April: 13
- May: 44
- June: 10
- August: 6
- September: 2
- October: 3
- November: 1
- December: 4
- The flat, disc-shaped egg case is deposited in a silken retreat where the female guards it, usually under tree bark. One recorded egg sac in Connecticut was 17 millimeters in diameter and held 130 spiderlings (Kaston 1948).
- West of the Continental Divide, there is a nearly identical species named Herpyllus propinquus (the “Western Parson Spider”). The two species can’t be separated from one another using only outward appearances, they look too much alike, so the details of the genitalia must be examined under a microscope.
- Spider is very fast and difficult to catch, let alone photograph.
- Though members of the entire family Gnaphosidae are collectively nicknamed “ground spiders,” that is not always where they’re found, especially fairly synanthropic species like this one.