In order to conduct a large-scale survey of urban spiders, we need the help of the public. We are asking people to collect spiders in their homes and gardens, fill out a simple data sheet about their collection, and send or bring the spiders and forms to the Natural History Museum.
In spite of their importance and abundance, we do not know much about the spiders in Los Angeles. There are no truly large collections of urban spiders from this area, as most collectors concentrate on studying natural areas.
As an important international port, new species of spiders from various parts of the world are always being accidentally introduced into the Los Angeles area, and some of these have established breeding populations. We need to know how widespread these introduced species have become, and how they have interacted with the native spiders. Also, we want to know how urbanization and the loss of natural habitat has affected populations and distributions of naturally occurring spiders.