1 December 2007

Huntsman Spiders and Orb Weavers

I was just reading Pea Soup: 5 in a week and all the comments on her post. Seems people are either really for, or really against, spiders.

I'm all for them, with the exception of redbacks, funnel webs and white tips (or white tails).
In fact, I find them beautiful and fascinating! I suppose that stems from when we were young, Dad would often call us to witness a spider catching and eating its prey.

We get lots of huntsmen spiders and orb weavers here. The huntsmen often get in the house and in the car.
We recently had one trapped in the car and it had babies. We flicked out and relocated hundreds of them. Seemed like that anyway. We've still got some running around the car, but they're a lot bigger now. I just carry a jar in the front to catch and release them.
We also have beautiful orb weavers in our yard, especially in our liquidamber tree in front of the house. I just learn where they spin at night, relocate really difficult ones, and avoid the rest.

If you walk into a web, STOP, and then walk in reverse. The web only sticks to you if you keep walking through it, although with tiny webs, it's usually too late. But don't worry if you do walk through. The spider usually runs back up it's main exit line when something big hits it's web, so you rarely end up with it on you.

I love feeding and naming the orbs closest to the house. The spider on the left, is Celie. She lived here, above our patio, all last summer. Arrived when she was quite small, and just stayed. This year, we probably have lots of her babies in the tree.

I even spent 4 hours checking a web above our front step, every 10 minutes once. Why? Because a male was wooing the female and I really wanted to see that! As he got closer, I checked more frequently. And yes, I did see the mating. Over 4 hours of wooing, trying to get close enough, a very brief tangle, and he dropped from the web as quickly as he could, but not quickly enough. I found him dead the next day.

This is Spidy. Not much of a name, but I wasn't sure of the sex at first; she was a different variety. She's the female that he obviously thought was worthy of the sacrifice. I didn't get a photo of him.
I know, I'm a bit weird... but they really are fascinating and beautiful!

I also love daddy-long-legs spiders in the house. Did you know they like catching cockroaches? I just dust their webs down when they get dusty or obvious.


  1. fasinating and brave of you.
    YOu have been busy decorating your blog. :)

  2. I love spiders too - I am the official spider catche/releaser of the house. However, I DO like to know where they are - not sure I could cope with hundreds of the little blighters surprising me the in the car!

  3. Lindi, thank you so much for my present which you left under my tree! I could really use a vacation right now LOL.

  4. Nice to find someone else who is not skittish at Orb Weavers!