Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Giant lichen orbweaver

Photo by Bill Lindemann
Now and then, friends send me photos they've taken of flora and/or fauna. Bill Lindemann graciously agreed that I could share this picture of a beautiful giant lichen orbweaver (Araneus bicentaurius) that he recently photographed in a large oak near his driveway in Fredericksburg. He calculated that her web measured 10 feet across and was at least 9 feet above the ground. "Impressive engineering spanning such a wide expanse for a small spider," he wrote me.

This species mostly comes out at night on its web and retreats during the day in a secretive place, like under a leaf or roof eave. If you spot a thick strand of silk linked from branch to branch, follow one end or the other, and you'll likely find her, tucked into her hidey-hole.

Which reminded me of some photos I took of one in our live oak last month. I never posted them here. I'd noticed our orbweaver several times and finally went out one night with my camera to get some shots. I posted them on Facebook the next day. Shortly thereafter, she vanished! 

Here she is.....was.....


Melody McMahon said...

Another post of learning from you Sheryl! I've never heard of an orbweaver before. Since I've been reading your blog I've made it a point to notice the small things and pay attention to what is new to me. Thanks for always teaching me something! It's not just pretty flowers!

Sheryl Smith-Rodgers said...

Thank you for your kind comments, Melody. I'm honored. And so pleased!!! :-)

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