Guardians of the Blackberries

The blackberries this year have been abundant and sweet.  They rarely make it back into the house as they are eaten right away.  I have met some wonderful creatures as I hunted for berries, mostly very beautiful, large orb weaver spiders whose abdomens measure a good 1/2 inch across.  The give-away to their presence is the large round web they weave.  Then, at one corner are some leaves that have been woven together with silk to make a snug little retreat, just spider size.  The insects they trap in the web are “embalmed” and carried home to be eaten in private.  Each night they weave a new web and retire to their retreat during the day to wait for meals to come to them.  These two patiently endured me prying open their homes to get photos.  I tried to identify them but found nothing that looked exactly like them.  They are perhaps a species of garden orb weavers or very pale marbled orb weavers.  If you are squeamish about spiders, don’t click on the links as there is probably more than you want to see.  If you’re interested, there is an amazing amount of beauty and diversity in the spider realm.


1 Response to “Guardians of the Blackberries”

  1. 1 Patricia Jane September 4, 2011 at 2:51 pm

    This is an AMAZING world we live in! Very interesting! and I’m not sure I’ve met these critters before.

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