garden insects

Golden Orb Spider

I promised to post about the Golden Orb Spider we had in our garden in our old house.

The one in the photos unfortunately died the day after the picture was taken. Something attacked it and it lost a couple of legs, after which it died. The male is minute – this one is a female. Afterwards another one appeared next to where this one’s web was. It started off quite small then shed it’s skin and grew and grew. Eventually it is the size of an adult human hand, leg tip to leg tip.

It is quite beautiful – the red legs and yellow web glisten in the sun. Apparently they are very shy and curl into a ball when disturbed. They also don’t live for very long. Ours would disappear in winter. I suppose the young hatched out in summer, as one or two appeared in our neighbour’s shed and he asked us to remove them, a pity, because they caught an incredible amount of insects, flies especially. They are not poisonous, so we just left them on the side of the carport, but I suppose the new house owner killed them when we moved, as he tore down the carport and moved it to another area.

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