Golden Orbweaver

Subject: spider
Location: Klickitat County, WA
July 22, 2015 9:40 pm
This spider was behind the dahlias on the north side of our house in Washington state, about 2000 ft. elev., yesterday (7/21/15). Just wondering what you can tell me about it.
Signature: Carla

Golden Orbweaver
Golden Orbweaver

Dear Carla,
This beauty is a Golden Orbweaver,
Argiope aurantia, and like other members of the Orbweaver family, it is a docile and non-aggressive spider that rarely strays far from its web, which it uses to snare its prey.  Orbweavers rarely bite humans, though a large individual might bite if carelessly handled.  The bite is considered harmless, though there may be redness and swelling near the site.

6 thoughts on “Golden Orbweaver”

  1. LOVE the Orbweavers! We were lucky enough to have ours build on our living room window – we could watch her all day and night, catching prey, spinning .. it was amazing. The “zig-zag” pattern is so the birds don’t run into their webs. 😉

    • The zig-zag pattern is known as the stabilimentum, and to the best of our knowledge, its true purpose is unknown, though warning birds is an interesting idea. An Australian Orbweaver known as the St Andrew’s Cross Spider is almost camouflaged in its stabilimentum.


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