Back Porch Spider
August 29, 2010
Hi Daniel and Lisa,
This spider has been nothing but tenacious over the last week. It has taught me to look before I step out onto my back porch. Three webs in six days were constructed overnight to trip me, to brush my hair, or to keep me from using the back steps! Here, it lies in wait for breakfast!
Is it simply “an orb-weaving” spider or something more specific?
Thanx for your time,
Great Smoky Mountains
Thanks so much for sending us your photo of an Orbweaver Spider and its web and providing details of the spider’s nightly activities. Each year, as summer nears an end and the warm autumn days shorten, we get countless requests to identify Orbweaver Spiders and questions regarding the danger they might cause. Spiders with orb webs in the family Araneidae (see BugGuide) are not aggressive and they rarely bite. The bite, in the unlikely event that it occurs, is not serious and will cause minor local swelling and tenderness. Orbweavers do not pose a threat and they should be left to spin their webs and capture flying insects like flies and mosquitoes. Your photo illustrates the classic orb web. We suspect your spider is in the genus Araneus.