This orb weaver spider is a regular visitor and can be found on its web in the same spot every day. In this case, we are looking at the underside of the spider.

Spiders produce silk from spinneret glands located at the tip of their abdomen (shown above). Different glands produce different silks. Some spiders can spin a silk safety line, a sticky silk line for trapping prey or a fine silk for wrapping.

Over time, the silk will lose its stickiness and become less effective at capturing prey. It is typical for spiders to eat their own web every day to recoup some of the energy used in spinning it since constructing the web requires a large amount of protein in the form of silk.

The silk used in the web also contains pheromones that attract potential mates.

If you like this spider and want to see more images of Patio Life, please view the Patio Life gallery.

Patio Life will be exhibiting at the Olympus InVision Photo Festival in Bethlehem, PA from November 1-24, 2019!

This festival is a month-long celebration featuring photography and photo-based arts with presentations from artists, workshops, demonstrations, exhibitions and panel discussions. I will be giving a presentation Saturday, November 2 from 3:00 pm – 4:30 pm and teaching a macro workshop, Sunday, November 3 from 10:00 am – 1:00 pm.

The Patio Life exhibit features over 20 large format reproductions of insects, the Patio Life book, a 4 x 6 foot map and identification guide of where over 60 insects were photographed in the back yard.

If you plant it – they will come!


Kingdom: Animal
Phylum: Arthropods
Class: Arachnids
Order: Spiders (Arineae)
Family: Orb Weavers

Genus: Araneus
Species: Cross Orb Weaver


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