Callilepis is a genus of gnaphosid spiders with about 20 described species. Some are found from Mexico to Canada, others from Europe to India. They are most commonly collected in dry areas, sandy roads and beaches.


Callilepis is easily distinguished from other Gnaphosidae by the single translucent lamina on the cheliceral retromargin, the short, angular endites and the flattened, transverse posterior median eyes. These eyes are probably not functional due to a series of ridges. Species range in size from 2.5 to 7 mm. The lateral eyes are larger than the medians. The abdomen is dark gray, longer than wide, with a dark, shiny anterior scutum in males, sometimes with white spots.


The species belong to two groups. The nocturna group consists of C. nocturna, C. pluto, C. imbecilla, C. chisos and C. concolor; the schuszteri group of C. schuszteri, C. mumai, C. eremella, C. gertschi and C. gosoga. Although both groups occur on both sides of the Atlantic, no species is holarctic in distribution.




  • (1975): A revision of the Holarctic spider genus Callilepis (Araneae, Gnaphosidae). American Museum novitates 2573. PDF
  • (2008): The world spider catalog, version 8.5. American Museum of Natural History.

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