Friday, July 21, 2017

Yellow garden spider

My pretty yellow garden spider gal has grown! The brown exoskeleton to the right is a sure sign that she's expanded around the waist. Ha! But if you look even closer, you might notice some webbing in front of her. Hmmm. That was new to me so I took some photos. 

Typically, orbweavers only build a round web and lurk upside down on it, waiting for prey to stumble into the sticky strands. I observed that the extra strands in front of this garden spider were messy and not at all orb-like. For added protection,  I surmise that she threw those up right before she molted. After a molt, a spider's outer skin is soft until it hardens. Thus, a spider is more vulnerable to predators right after a molt. My theory: this garden spider threw up the extra web as a shield. Cool, eh?

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