Three new species of spiders have been spotted at the site of the proposed Aranmula airport project.

A research team, led by A.V. Sudhikumar, an arachnologist with the Zoology Department of Christ College, Irinjalakuda, has also found eight other rare species of spiders from the project site.

During the study, which has been on for the past month, the team spotted 45 varieties of spiders in the area. “The spider Cybaeus belongs to the Cybaeidae family and makes its net among dry leaves. The nocturnal spider has been spotted for the first time in India,” Mr. Sudhikumar said. Another spider Micrommata spotted here belongs to the Sparassidae family, and it hides between green leaves to catch its prey.

European counterparts

So far, seven types of spiders in the genus have been spotted in the world, but all in the European countries, Mr. Sudhikumar said. The Othobula species of spider from the Corinnidae family, which is found in dry leaves, mainly eats ants, he said.

Eight other varieties of spiders found at the site were also rare in the State, he said. Research students Sudhin and Nafin were the other members of the research team.