Conservation biologists are starting to recognize the importance of the invertebrate component in the functioning of healthy ecosystems. Therefore any approach to conservation needs to take into account the composition of the invertebrate fauna. As part of the South African National Survey of Arachnida (SANSA), surveys are underway to determine the biodiversity of arachnids present in South Africa. Although arachnids constitute an abundant and highly diverse group of invertebrate animals little is still known about their diversity in large parts of the country.

Inventories with resulting check lists provide valuable baseline information on species and are the first step for a better understanding of the fauna present. The aim of these inventories is to determine the percentage of species presently known from South Africa and those that need protection. Several long term surveys are presently underway focussing on specific areas based on the needs of the end users, e.g. universities, nature conservation agencies and agriculture. Several long term surveys have been completed over the years contributing valuable information.

Based on end-user requirements the surveys focus on the following areas:

Floral Biomes

Provincial surveys

Protected areas


Urban and suburban areas


Information may be used freely with acknowledgement to the source