Hawaiian Orbweaver is Argiope avara kauaiensis

Ed. Note:  April 15, 2014
Please assist in the identification of this Black
Argiope from Hawaii.

better pics of spider from Nounou mountain
I went back to the mountain and got some better pictures of the same spider. It was still there! One of it’s babies at top right It has sorta of a bull’s eye on the butt side view you can see how high we are, bout 1000 feet elevation That’s a bee it caught on the right The underside a better shot I’ll just sent the rest. I hope these help! Let me know what you can find out. Thanks,

Unknown Hawaiian Argiope
12/30/2007 Kauai spider
I found this spider on the Nounou mountain trail (Sleeping Giant trail). It is on the island of Kauai, Hawaii. I haven’t ever seen this spider on our island. Sorry the quality isn’t very good. I’d appreciate any info you could give me about it. Thanks.
Taeru Andrade
I forgot to add that the body was a metallic blue and the spots were white.

This is definitely in the genus Argiope, but it does not look like Argiope appensa, commonly called a Garden Spider, that lives in Hawaii. Perhaps it is just the poor quality of the photo.

Thanks for the reply, It’s not our typical Garden Spider for sure, we have tons of them around. This is a real different one. It was bigger than the biggest garden spider I’ve ever seen!! I am 31 and have lived my whole life on Kauai and have hiked MANY trails since 5 years old and this is a first for me. Thanks,

Dear Nancy or Taeru,
We had trouble finding your original email since you used a different email address and signed the letter with a different name. We still maintain this is an Argiope, but we have no idea what species. We will try to research this and meanwhile, we will post your photo in the hopes that one of our readers will save us a bit of work and properly identify your gorgeous spider.

Update:  December 5, 2014
A new submission of this Orbweaver has finally led us to the proper identification of
Argiope avara kauaiensis.

4 thoughts on “Hawaiian Orbweaver is Argiope avara kauaiensis”

  1. I also saw a similar spider, I thought it was entirely shiny and jet black but it was very large and hanging in a web at the top of Hihimanu – also relatively high elevation, exposed to strong winds. Trying to find out what it was when I found this post.

    • We still have not gotten a definitive identification on this Orbweaver. Your comment has allowed us to update this very old posting with some new information, including tagging it as unidentified and running it as a featured posting with a plea to request assistance in its identification.

  2. I have just returned from Kauai where I saw a huge spider that looked like this. It was at the highest elevation of the Powerline Trail, in a seldom visited area. The spider was enormous, and it was sitting in a web between two trees that must have been at least 25 feet apart. It was the biggest web spider I have ever seen. I have a photo, taken on an overcast day and using a zoom (I didn’t want to get too close!), but I’m having some trouble attaching it.


Leave a Comment