A spider with a pearlescent back decorated with an indented line and 2 spots on each side, and a brown underside decorated with yellow markings.
Mon, Nov 10, 2008 at 4:12 PM
Hiya, I found this spider on our now flowering Floribunda Iceberg. What a beautiful spider with a pearlescent back decorated with very subtle markings (that look like engraving of a line in the middle and 2 spots on each side), and a brown underside decorated with yellow markings. It was sitting in the centre of a round web. My husband doesn’t like spiders, so my first thought was to pick it up and toss it out of the garden… which is why I have photographed it on this dried branch. But I know that spiders can be a good friend to have in the garden too, and so I am in a dilema. What should I do? I attach 3 photos offering the top, underside and side views. I hope these help. As I do not know how they should be measured, the side view photo is against a ruler. I am zero on spiders as you can see… hahaha… thanks very much!
Leederville, Perth, Western Australia
When we first read your letter, we read the word Floribunda and somehow thought you were in Florida. We were going to say that this was probably a light Banded Garden Spider, Argiope trifasciata, which is well represented on BugGuide. Sometimes we see very light specimens of this species. Once we realized we had erred and that you were in Australia, we tried to identify your Argiope. Seems the Argiope trifasciata we found on a Brisbane Insect website is a different species entirely and we suspect it is misidentified. We then found the Thumbnails of Australian Spiders website and there are several Argiopes pictured. We believe this may be Argiope extensa. There are some good images of this species on the Find a Spider Guide of Australia.