Subject: Crab-spider thing
Location: Washington, D.C.
November 17, 2013 10:01 am
Hi there, we just found this spider that has a multi-colored body that almost looks like a shell. We found him today, November 17, on our front stoop in Washington, DC. He was about a centimeter long with his legs bent.
This is a Marbled Orbweaver, Araneus marmoreus, a species with highly variable coloration and markings. Your individual is a female. This yellow variation is quite common and it is pictured on BugGuide. There is also an orange variation that is commonly called a Pumpkin Spider, both for the color and the seasonal appearance in the autumn near Halloween. Like many other Orbweavers, the Marbled Orbweaver only lives a single season, and eggs that hatch in the spring produce individuals that mature in the fall. Since they reach maximum size at that time, they are highly visible in the autumn. More information on the Marbled Orbweaver is available on BugGuide.