Black and Yellow Orb Weaver catches hapless Hummingbird

Spider with hummingbird
Hey Bugman,
Like everybody else I love this site!! I came home from work yesterday and saw this carnage outside my bedroom window. I had been watching this Golden-Orb Weaver (I call it the zig-zag spider) for days but was shocked at the attached picture. As I lifted the shade to get a better look at the female ruby throated hummingbird I also saw a poor cicada was also trapped in the spiders web. Needless to say this spider will not be hungry for many days. Just thought you might enjoy this picture. Didn’t know if you had ever seen anything like this before. This all took place in College Station, Texas.
Donell S. Frank

Hi Donell,
We are a bit nervous to post your photos (though that won’t stop us) because we fear that they might bring about the demise of numerous Black and Yellow Orb Weavers, Argiope aurantia. This is a most unusual catch for this regal spider, and we know that the nature loving public has a particular fondness for hummingbirds. Nonetheless, this is quite an amazing documentation. Thank you so much for sending the images our way.

3 thoughts on “Black and Yellow Orb Weaver catches hapless Hummingbird”

  1. I’m so angry that my argiope has a humming bird moth in her web, she is in flowers that all the good insects like, and also humming birds themselves, I’m almost ready to get rid of her and all the other lg orb web spiders in my yard there must be 20 I’m not seeing any of my beautiful joe vines and giant swallow tails around anymore, Ali I have a tiger swallow tail who will be emerging soon and I don’t want him to die so is it ok to get rid of these spiders there is just to many and they are bigger and fatter than ever. They are starting to make me sick when I see a beautiful butterfly or moth, if that spider catches a humming bird I’ll be so mad I didn’t do away with her!

  2. Did you know a large praying mantis can also kill a hummingbird? We need them in our gardens. This spider also loves mud dauber wasps, so one may get more of those, with less of her. Everything is about checks and balances in nature. Many spiders means lots of insects to nourish them. Rid the spiders and you will not like the results, even though one may feel justified. Your plants and trees are being helped with protection from her, too, because she is one of the larger spiders to catch the bigger insects and wasps. Did you know she loves mud daubers? She is a beauty as much as a hummingbird, we just don’t see her that way. (Humans consume creatures and plants that are sweet and beautiful in nature). Replacing her will take time after any destruction. Nature will not modify a diet to please us because they developed to fill a need. For greater understanding, check out the wolves of Yellowstone Park and the balance they brought back.


Leave a Comment