Egg Sacs of Bird Dropping Spider in Australia

Subject: Cocoon identification
Location: Melbourne
May 10, 2016 10:17 pm
I found this on my Magnolia tree today. I am in Melbourne, Australia. I am interested to know what it is. I have removed it from the tree. It is currently Autumn.
Signature: Regards Sharon

Bird Dropping Spider Egg Sacs
Bird Dropping Spider Egg Sacs

Dear Sharon,
These look like the Egg Sacs of a Spider.  We found a matching image on Museum Victoria where it states:  “Another interesting feature of this spider is its egg sacs. Bird-dropping Spiders can produce up to 13 egg cases. They are dark brown with black markings and, when suspended in the web, look like a bunch of dark grapes. The female keeps watch over the egg cases until the young emerge, usually in late winter to early spring.”  The scientific name of the Bird Dropping Spider is
Celaemia excavata.  The adult Bird Dropping Spider is pictured on the Australian Museum site.

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