CLOSED: Do you know what kind of Spider this is?

Greenfield, IN(Zone 5b)

It was in my backyard (in central Indiana). With the bright yellow on it's back, I was wondering if it was poisonous?

Thumbnail by dignbloom
Scotia, CA(Zone 9b)

I have them here too! They are kinda pretty in a big scary kid of way! I just think on them as garden spiders, I guess any spider bite is poisonous to some extent but these are actually pretty harmless. They make some pretty tough webs and like to hang out on cool mornings. I never kill these but I do knock down their webs when they insist on building across the gateways and paths. They will usually rebuild it several times befor they get the message and move to a less traveled place! I have had to brush them off me a few times when I ran into their webs but never had one bite me.

Greenfield, IN(Zone 5b)

Oh my! I don't think I could handle one of these on me! I killed this one, just because it was big & I need to get in that corner & clear out the weeds! I usually leave spiders alone outside. Julie

Scotia, CA(Zone 9b)

LOL Julie! Don't let their size intimadate you! Next time just break the web up. The Spider will hide from you for awhile so you can work the area and will come back out and rebuild later. I like that they catck large flying things like grasshoppers that can destroy my gardens!

Westbrook, ME(Zone 5a)

That's a Garden Spider - Black & Yellow Argiope. They're a gardener's friend ;o)

Petaluma, CA

A few years back, this kind of spider was featured on the cover of Organic Gardening. I'd love to have one in my garden (maybe 2 or 3) but having one actually on me would startle me into the next county! They eat lots & lots of pests. I'd follow Zany's advice on them. And they are nice to look at.

Camilla, GA(Zone 8a)

Poppysue is right. This is the "Argiope Aurantia" or Orb Weaver spider..They make amazing web's..I have one in my back yard that is about 6 ft across.. Beautiful..They will take care of your garden pest..
Larkie

http://members.nbci.com/nicksspiders/argiopeaurantia.htm

Powhatan, VA(Zone 6b)

The young will overwinter in a large pear-shaped sack. A neat spider to say the least.

puttyrat =^..^=

Westbrook, ME(Zone 5a)

Larkie - A 6-foot spider would scare the begeezus out a me!!

Scotia, CA(Zone 9b)

LOL Poppysue! I snorted coffee through my nose on that one!

Greenfield, IN(Zone 5b)

LOL Poppysue & Zany! Now I feel bad for killing the darn thing! I was pretty. I will not kill anymore if I find them. I also found a Brown Recluse yesterday & happily killed that one - they seem to find their way into the house and I know how bad their bite can be! Julie

Scotia, CA(Zone 9b)

Brown recluse are bad news! Now that is one I can kill gladly along with the black widows!~

Camilla, GA(Zone 8a)

LOL..The Web, Poppysue..Guess I should be more specific? Gave me a good laugh, although here in the south GA woods, 6ft., might not be too far off base..LOL
Larkie

Oak Hill, OH(Zone 6a)

Argiope aurantia

http://www.arachnology.org/Arachnology/Pages/Orbweb.html

Also known as St Andrew's Cross spider. Last fall my hubby and I were walking in the woods and saw maybe 40-50 different webs with a spider in each center. The webs were huge! At least 4-5 feet across. Fortunately they were all about 10 feet or so off the ground spun between pine trees. The sun was just right (early evening) so the webs were very visible - and beautiful.

Have to admit it was kind of freaky walking under some of them even though I knew they were harmless - they are very big spiders.

I was just sorry I didn't have a camera with me!

(Zone 5b)

I was just going to post my pic to have it ID'ed
Creeps me out to know they are out there were I go poking around weeding and stuff!
Note the zig zag weave in the web!

This message was edited Aug 23, 2006 10:37 PM

Thumbnail by Cottage_Rose
Benton, KY(Zone 7a)

Also known as Writing Spiders or Scribblers...and is thought to be the spider that the children's book, Charlotte's Web was written about.

West Pottsgrove, PA(Zone 6b)

I thought Charlotte was a Garden Spider, Araneus diadematus ?

Chepachet, RI(Zone 5b)

From "Charlotte's Web"--Charlotte refers to herself as "Charlotte A. Cavatica," and from this one can assume that the author means to identify Charlotte as an "Auraneus Cavaticus" or a barn spider--which would make sense, because Charlotte does after all live in a barn.

The only reason I know this is because I had a beautiful golden garden spider in my tomato patch and as I was looking this up I stumbled upon this information.

It's too bad--I think Argiope aurantia is much prettier. :)

West Pottsgrove, PA(Zone 6b)

Niere, thanks for clearing that up! I always wondered about that, not having read the book in maybe thirty+ years...

Chepachet, RI(Zone 5b)

No problem claypa. :D Hey--next time you drive past King Street, give it a wave--I used to work in a building on King Street in Pottstown back in the day!

Aurora, CO(Zone 5a)

When I was little we used to have these huge black and yellow spiders that would make enormous webs across our gardens. We called them banana spiders (don't know why), and they're probably in large part responsible for my arachnophobia.

Call an exterminator for the brown recluse! Don't mess around with them! Recluse bad juju!

Murfreesboro, TN(Zone 7a)

I'm glad to know what they are. We have some that build webs near our big pond each year. As long as they don't build them where I run into them when I walk out there, we co-exist quite peacefully. (I figure they're taking advantage of the built-in insect buffet, and helping me out by keeping my skeeter/gnat population down.

Oklahoma City, OK

It PAINS me to hear about some of you people are killing these friendly spiders. You should feel BLESSED and PROUD that a gentle Argiope chose to make its home in your garden. My wife and I have fallen in love with the big, beautiful female who settled outside our front window. In a short three months she has become a part of our family and a helpful friend in ridding our garden of pests.
Please do your research. There are only a FEW select spiders that are any harm to you or your family. Before killing these helpful friends remember that every time you gripe about pesty bugs, weevils, etc. you will contribute to their presence by killing a spider.

This message was edited Sep 3, 2006 8:07 PM

Charleston, SC(Zone 9a)

There are 3 dozen or more of these spiders in my backyard cottage garden, huge ones. By this time of year they have covered almost every inch of spider real estate. They love to make their webs across my garden paths so I have to be very careful when walking in the garden this time of year. One thing I've noticed though is that they "learn" very fast. When they string webs across my paths, I gently break one side of the web so that the web and spider fall to the other side. I only have to do this once, maybe twice, before the spider will learn to orient its web so that it does not cross the path.

Oak Hill, OH(Zone 6a)

Although I saw so many in the woods last fall, I've only had one of these beautiful spiders around my house. I'd love to have more! Is there anything I can do to attract them?

Charleston, SC(Zone 9a)

I'm just guessing here. I have so many that they border on problematic due to the ick factor of seeing multiple spiders at every turn and of having to walk with one hand out front just in case. I'd say the proliferation of them in my garden is probably due to the combination of lots of plants (and very little grass) with few if any chemical controls. I don't rush out with the chemicals at the 1st sign of insects. (This is partly intentional and partly due to recent health issues.) As a result the garden is full of argiope spiders as well as lady bugs, praying mantis, tons of butterflies, bees, and a plethera of dragon flies. In the end they seem to keep the bad guys in check pretty well.

With so very many spiders, they do trap the occaisional butterfly or dragonfly; but they also eat a lot of "bad" bugs, and there are still plenty of butterflies left. Last summer I found a bunch of pine sawfly larvae eating the foliage on a tree branch. I was just trying to decide if I should try to drag the hose back there when I noticed a number of argiope spiders (a slightly different variety) building webs that all terminated on the effected branch. Research on the spider showed that it was one of the few creatures that would eat the larvae. Within a few days the larvae were gone. I thought that was pretty cool.

Anyhow, I figure you need lots of plants to attact insects for food and to provide attractive places for webs, and you need to be willing to keep the chemicals to a bare minimum. I haven't used anything more powerful than neem in years; frankly, I can't recall when I last used neem. Also, by the end of summer, my cottage garden with its 1000+ plants has usually gotten completely out of hand. I'm not recommending that, but it probably does make the place attractive to the spiders. (Maybe let one corner get a little "wild".)

Brockton, MA(Zone 6a)

Scutler, My flower gardens get a little 'wild' this time of year, too. Preditors like 'wild'.
I started a thread in Wildlife a few weeks ago about my Argiope. She died last week.
There are a few pics in the thread, especially the posts of Sept. 2nd.
http://davesgarden.com/forums/t/641426/
Andy P

Noblesville, IN(Zone 5a)

Here is the picture of mine.

Thumbnail by makshi
Noblesville, IN(Zone 5a)

Andy,

Why did she die?

Brockton, MA(Zone 6a)

Makshi, I think that's the way it works. Her job was done.
Our entire area was sprayed for mosquitoes a few weeks ago, that may have hastened her death, too.
Andy P

The Villages, FL(Zone 9a)

I had an argiope in my front yard. She spun the most beautiful web, with what really looked like a ladder in the center. The "ladder" was much thicker web than the rest and appeared very white. My spider book says that it is called a "stabilamentum" and it serves to camouflage the young spider. Whatever it is, it is magnificent!! Karen

NE, KS(Zone 5b)

What an interesting thread, and about spiders! We call them ladder spiders. My Mom & I were discussing "mine" over the weekend... I have "encouraged" this one to stay to the back of the planter..

Thumbnail by AuntB
NE, KS(Zone 5b)

Lunch- same spider - different view

Thumbnail by AuntB
Brockton, MA(Zone 6a)

I miss mine. She only caught one 'good' bug that I know of.
Andy P

Thumbnail by Sarahskeeper
NE, KS(Zone 5b)

Awe, sorry, Andy. Now that's an all you can eat buffet table!

Brockton, MA(Zone 6a)

She didn't eat the wings. I saw them below the web the next day.
I just found an unknown smaller spider catching a large grasshopper, took some pics too. We'll see what they look like tonight.
Andy P

Chicago, IL(Zone 5b)

Is this the same spider? markings seem different.... (first time posting an image -- hope it works!)

not sure why there's no image. Could it be too big a file? I'm working on it....

This message was edited Sep 18, 2006 12:01 PM

Thumbnail by wickerparker
Chicago, IL(Zone 5b)

trying again....

Thumbnail by wickerparker
Charleston, SC(Zone 9a)

I'm not a spider expert by any means, but I don't think so. The "abdomen" looks different. Based on the web, I'd say it is probably a type of argiope, just not the same type. Yours looks like the banded argiope: http://mamba.bio.uci.edu/~pjbryant/biodiv/spiders/Argiope%20trifasciata.htm

Chicago, IL(Zone 5b)

Thanks -- I'm sure you're right. I never thought I'd say this about a spider -- but I'm finding it kind of beautiful, and as it's living right outside our door, it's been fascinating (and convenient) to watch it do its thing.

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