08.17.2020 Macrarachnido Monday

Arachnid was in the title so you were warned.  🙂

Friday evening at bedtime I took Bentley out into the backyard.  I carry a 1400 lumen flashlight that lights up the whole yard and I noticed above one of the wild blueberry bushes a single silk thread with a large round “thing” at the end.  Of course it was a spider. Moving too fast for me to shoot it in the dark, I told myself to look for the web in the morning.  And there it was  when we went out at 3 on Saturday morning.  At first glance it looked almost perfect and larger than most of the usual Argiope webs that I see. So after Bentley was done and we went in for his breakfast, I got out my 3-step ladder and climbed up with a flashlight held next to the twin flash (so the camera could autofocus) and got a nice portrait.

Arboreal Orbweaver-Neoscona crucifera

I think that the light of the flashlight made the spider think it was daybreak because it started to take down its web which is a typical behavior…construct a web at dusk and take it down at dawn.  Again, I couldn’t grab a shot as it was moving too fast, very fast actually, and settled for this picture with the webbing all balled up. Eventually it eats the silk.

Sunday morning I checked it out again and the web was rebuilt.  I made a shot of the business side of the spider just to have an image. Red is a marker for identification.

And finally I went out this morning in the light and looked for the spider not expecting to find it.  Many spiders wrap themselves up in a leaf to hide from predators and photographers but this one was just cuddled up in a dried blueberry leaf and spent the day there.

I don’t often get a chance to follow the actions of the same insect/spider so this was a treat.  I guess it will still be up in the bush again tonight but I don’t think I can get anything different. I hoped for a good view of the eyes but the head is tucked in and if I tried shooting from below I’d damage the web.

About Steve Gingold

I am a Nature Photographer with interests in all things related. Water, flowers, insects and fungi are my main interests but I am happy to photograph wildlife and landscapes and all other of Nature's subjects.
This entry was posted in Closeup Photography, Insect Behavior, macro photography, Nature Photography, Western Massachusetts and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

23 Responses to 08.17.2020 Macrarachnido Monday

  1. M.B. Henry says:

    Niiice – I appreciate spiders well enough as long as they’re not in my bed or something haha. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Lots of good texture here. Interesting how you attribute to the spider the volition to avoid not only predators but also photographers.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Eliza Waters says:

    So cool… I didn’t know they take down and eat their web daily. Fascinating! Late summer is orb weaver time, so I’ll have to keep an eye out for these gentle giants.

    Liked by 2 people

    • After seeing the spider do that I remembered having read it somewhere but had forgot so was initially surprised. They do hang out in trees and shrubs. I was surprised to see it resting unmoved all day in that leaf. The spider rebuilt the web last night even though it was raining.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. krikitarts says:

    I really enjoyed this session, Steve. I’ve been arachno-poor for quite a while now, as it’s mid-winter here. I did see a gorgeous Slater spider yesterday, while constructing a new brick walk, but didn’t have the time to arrange even a quick session. I have a special fondness for the Neoscona genus, from meetings in both Minnesota and Nebraska, and it’s good to see another.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Todd Henson says:

    Beautiful exploration here of the daily habits of a spider. I’d forgotten they took down their webs each morning, thinking they leave that up to the poor hapless photographer who first walks the trail that day. That last shot, of the spider curled up in the leaf, is fascinating.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You wouldn’t think a spider would need a nap after hanging out in the web all night but I guess vigilance is tiring. Like you, I’ve walked into my share of trail webs. No mummification yet although some of those spiders were pretty big based on the webs.I did enjoy keeping track of the construction and destruction webbing process. Glad you enjoyed seeing it.


  6. Littlesundog says:

    I love how you captured the day-cycle of this spider. We have spiders in the trees in our front yard who take up their webs as soon as I put a flashlight out to the yard for our little house dogs to do their morning business. They tuck into the underside of a leaf up high during the daylight hours. Then just before dark they are spinning the web again, often in the same spot as the night before. I’ve been watching this process for years! I’m happy you captured it in these beautiful images!

    Liked by 1 person

    • You’ve been watching the process for a while and I will do the same now that we have our resident orbweaver. I hope its a female (maybe named Charlotte), I am not sure how to tell, and spreads little spiderlings in the yard for future wonderment. Glad that you enjoyed the images, Lori. Thanks.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. shoreacres says:

    Whether accidentally or purposefully, I often take down spider webs on the boats I work on. It always surprised me that the web would be right back in place the next day. When I learned that the demolition/reconstruction behavior’s normal for them, I crossed that off my list of things to feel guilty about. I read that one reason for them to eat their silk is for the protein it contains: a side benefit I certainly never had considered.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Although they sometimes elude us, there are good reasons for pretty much everything that organisms do in nature. Not much is by whimsy as with humans. I try not to disturb webs of any spider’s making but sometimes it is unavoidable and, as you observed, they have no trouble replacing them.


  8. Great series of shots, Steve! Nice to be able to follow an animals activities and record it in a series of stills.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Pingback: 09.12.2020-2 Spidurday | Stephen Gingold Nature Photography Blog

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