Subject: “Thorny” spotted spider
Location: Houston, TX
September 23, 2014 9:29 pm
We live in the Houston, TX area. I’ve lived all over and never seen a spider like these anywhere. Found about 8 of them and their lovely webs all over our yard — some yellow, some red. An online search turned up some similar spiders from far-reaches of the globe, but nothing definitively local. I’m curious to know what type and whether they are native.
Thanks in advance for any information.
Signature: Kelly in TX
Dear Kelly in TX,
The Crablike Spiny Orbweaver, Gasteracantha cancriformis, which is quite variable in terms of coloration, is native to Texas and a significant portion of the warmers parts of North America as well as the Central American neotropics and the Caribbean. We would love to post images of your red and your yellow individuals shot in the same manner as the white individual we posted. See BugGuide for additional information on the Crablike Spiny Orbweaver, which is harmless.