Saturday, August 31, 2013

Argiope mama update

In my last post (August 12, 2013), I reported that our garden spider (Argiope aurantia) was getting large again. Well, she DID INDEED deposit more eggs in a second sac! (See photo above.) Darned if she didn't start getting big AGAIN–a third time! Many female spiders can store sperm, which is how she's able to keep dropping eggs. Take a look at how she's changed since my last photos Aug. 12. 
August 16, 2013
August 24, 2013
August 28, 2013...she's getting BIGGER.
August 31, 2013 (today) She's back to "normal." This morning, while watering, James couldn't find her. She'd disappeared. I suspected that she was off, taking care of egg business. Sure enough, I went back outside this evening, and there she was, back on her web, fiesty as ever and "thin" again. I looked and looked but couldn't find a third egg sac. But we will! She's hid there among the leaves and branches somewhere.

In the meantime, the argiope in the back yard disappeared from her post near the rue and salvia. The thing is, she AND her web vanished. Which told me that she up and relocated (if the web's still there, a predator likely got the spider). I looked and looked but couldn't find her. Until this morning, while I was watering in the back yard, I noticed a strand of spider web but didn't think much of it. Until I looked again. "THERE you are!" I exclaimed, seeing my spider friend. She'd crawled all the way across the back yard to her new location! This is her third location. I originally spotted her on another salvia at a different spot in the back yard. I think I annoyed her so she moved. Several days later was when I found her by the rue. This gal is sensitive and doesn't like to be bugged!

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