As the son of a farmer, he studied at the universities of Leipzig, Freiburg, Berlin and Kiel. He became a lecturer in 1887 and made trips to the Baltic States and the Bismarck Archipelago, and was in 1889 participants of the Plankton Expedition of the Alexander -von- Humboldt Foundation. He has many zoological groups, but preferably spiders studied. He was interested in biogeography. In 1903 he was elected a member of the Scholars Academy Leopoldina.
He married on June 19, 1899 Maria Dahl ( 1872-1972 ), who also worked at the Institute of Zoology in Kiel and has also published several papers on spiders.
He founded the science books series: The fauna of Germany and adjacent sea areas according to their characteristics and by their way of life, which since 1925 ( various publishers ) to date under his name ( cited as: " Dahl: wildlife " or "the fauna of Germany" ) appears, to this day ( most recently in 2008 ) are published 81 titles in this series.
- Friedrich Dahl, Hans; Lohmann: The Halo Bates yield of the Plankton Expedition ( part a) / The Halacarinen the Plankton Expedition ( part b). In: Plankton Expedition 1889: Results of the Plankton Expedition of the Humboldt Foundation. Teaching: Cramer. Part: G: Volume 2, 1971 ( Authorized reprint of the edition Lipsius / Tischer, Kiel / Leipzig 1893).
- Instructions to zoological observations. In: Science and Education. Band 61 second, revised edition. Quelle & Meyer, Leipzig 1929.
- Animal geography. In: Encyclopedia of Geography. Part 10 F. Deuticke, Vienna 1925.
- Friedrich Dahl (ed.): The fauna of Germany and adjacent sea areas according to their characteristics and by their way of life. ConchBooks, Hack Home 1925-1989 (Vol. 1-67 ) / 1994 ff (Volume 68 ff).
- Comparative psychology or The doctrine of the mental life of man and animals. G. Fischer, Jena, 1922.
- Foundations of an ecological animal geography, Volume 1 and 2 G. Fischer, Jena, 1921.
- Foundations of an ecological animal geography. G. Fischer, Jena, 1921.
- The social democratic state in the light of Darwin 's theory Weismann. Fischer, Jena, 1920.
- The isopods or isopods Germany. Fischer, Jena, 1916, doi: . 10.5962/bhl.title.9943
- Short instructions for scientific collecting and preserving animals. Third, revised edition. Fischer, Jena, 1914.
- The relationship of physique and the color to the surroundings. In: Comparative physiology and morphology of arachnids under special consideration of the way of life, part 1 Fischer, Jena, 1913..
- The Halobatiden the Plankton Expedition. In: Results of the Plankton Expedition of the Humboldt Foundation; Volume 2, G, a Lipsius & Tischer, Kiel / Leipzig 1893 ( Attached Work: The Halacarinen the plankton expedition of H. Lohmann ).
- Victor Hensen, Friedrich Dahl: Travel Description of Plankton Expedition. In: Otto Krummel (ed.): Results of the Plankton Expedition of the Humboldt Foundation; Volume 1, A. Lipsius & Tischer, Kiel / Leipzig 1892.
- The fauna of Germany and adjacent sea areas according to their characteristics and by their way of life / founded by Friedrich Dahl. Taken further by Maria Dahl and Hans Bischoff. Authorized facsimile edition. University Microfilms boarding, Ann Arbor, MI / London ( Reprinted on demand).
- Pierre Bonnet: Bibliographia araneorum. Analysis méthodique de toute la littérature aranéologique jusqu'en 1939, Vol 1 Les frères Doularoude, Toulouse, 1968 ( EA Toulouse 1945).