Posted by: PMGDD | August 17, 2021

Nature Miramichi – Spider Identification Request

From: David McLeod <mcleodda@nbnet.nb.ca>
Sent: Monday, July 26, 2021 5:29 AM
To: Peter and Deana Gadd <gadd1313@nb.sympatico.ca>; Jessica Bowie <sunshineontreetops@gmail.com>
Subject: Re: Nature Miramichi – Spider Identification Request

Hi Peter,

Speaking of wind-blown spiders, I sure blew this one! I led Jessica down the proverbial garden path by focussing on species of wolf spiders. It had me stumped, but Jessica was able to get a good identification to the species level using a Seek app. As it turns out, it’s a Six-spotted Orbweaver (Araniella displicata) in an entirely different group, the Orbweaver Family (Araneidae).

I made the erroneous assumption that the photo showed the underside of the spider. After looking up the Six-spotted Orbweaver in “Common Spiders of North America” (Bradley, 2013), I realized that it was indeed the upper side view showing two of the six dark spots on the all-white abdomen. They attach their orbicular small web and their egg sac to a leaf near the ground of tall grasses. The globular ball of silk under the spider may be a web rather than an egg sac, because it usually rests in the centre of the web. Although it is active in spring, it doesn’t make its egg sac of more golden coloured silk until summer, so June 17 may be too early, and this silk looks rather whitish. Jessica also said that she had parked her car next to a field, and that is this spider’s preferred habitat. So it must have blown from there and stuck onto the car because of the sticky web silk and the dewy surface.

Hope this straightens things out,

Dave


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