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Orchard Orbweaver (Leucauge venusta)

The orchard spider is a species of the orbweaver variety characterized with a long jaw, indigenous to different parts of the United States like Colombia, southern Canada as well as various regions of Central America.

Scientific Classification

Orchard Orbweaver

Physical Description and Identification

Adults

Size: Like most other orb weaving spiders, the males are smaller in size than their female counterparts. The male spiders are 3.5mm to 4 mm long, while the females have a length of 5.5 mm to 7.5 mm.

Color: Having a distinct and beautiful coloration, these spiders have a yellowish-green carapace with stripes of brown or black to the sides. The top of its downward-facing abdomen has a silvery color (more intense in males) with dark stripes while the stomach, facing upward can come in shades of red, blue, silver, green and yellow. Its belly is also marked with a red, orange or yellow crescent and the legs are of a leafy-green hue.

Other Characteristic Features: It has an elongated abdomen, while the legs are long and slender. Like most other spiders, they too have eight eyes arranged in a trapezoid manner.

Orchard Orbweaver Size

Eggs

The egg sac made from white and orange silk contains hundreds of eggs and may be of a diameter of approximately 9 mm.

Spiderlings

The spiderlings that remain in the egg sac throughout winter hatch in the next spring. They are also capable of spinning their own webs from the juvenile stage.

The Web

Their webs are circular, positioned in a horizontal manner, with the spider hanging upside down at the center of it, waiting to capture its prey.

Orchard Orbweaver Web

Does the Orchard Orbweaver Bite and How Poisonous is It

They have a mild temperament and are generally not dangerous or harmful towards mankind. They generally do not bite and if at all they do their venom is not said to be poisonous to mankind (from the number of spiders documented).

Orchard Orbweaver Spider

Quick Facts

Other names Orchard spider, Venusta Orchard Spider
Lifespan About a year (like most orbweaver spider species)
Distribution Parts of Southern Canada to Central America
Habitat Woodlands, low shrubby areas and small trees
Common predators Large spiders, wasps and many other large-sized flying insects, small animals and birds
Diet Small moths, flies, leaf insects, flying insects
Venusta Orchard Spider
Orchard Spider

Did You Know

  • Leucauge in Greek means having a bright gleam, while Venusta in Latin translates to beautiful, which is apt for this spider because of its multi-colored pattern and attractive appearance.
  • This species directly attained its nomenclature from Charles Darwin.
  • The males are not killed by the females since they possess fangs with which they protect themselves from their partner during mating, hence having a longer life span.

Image Credits: Bugguide.net, 2.bp.blogspot.com, Thumbs-prod.si-cdn.com, Farm2.staticflickr.com, Objects.liquidweb.services, C1.staticflickr.com

The orchard spider is a species of the orbweaver variety characterized with a long jaw, indigenous to different parts of the United States like Colombia, southern Canada as well as various regions of Central America.

Orchard Orbweaver

Physical Description and Identification

Adults

Size: Like most other orb weaving spiders, the males are smaller in size than their female counterparts. The male spiders are 3.5mm to 4 mm long, while the females have a length of 5.5 mm to 7.5 mm.

Color: Having a distinct and beautiful coloration, these spiders have a yellowish-green carapace with stripes of brown or black to the sides. The top of its downward-facing abdomen has a silvery color (more intense in males) with dark stripes while the stomach, facing upward can come in shades of red, blue, silver, green and yellow. Its belly is also marked with a red, orange or yellow crescent and the legs are of a leafy-green hue.

Other Characteristic Features: It has an elongated abdomen, while the legs are long and slender. Like most other spiders, they too have eight eyes arranged in a trapezoid manner.

Orchard Orbweaver Size

Eggs

The egg sac made from white and orange silk contains hundreds of eggs and may be of a diameter of approximately 9 mm.

Spiderlings

The spiderlings that remain in the egg sac throughout winter hatch in the next spring. They are also capable of spinning their own webs from the juvenile stage.

The Web

Their webs are circular, positioned in a horizontal manner, with the spider hanging upside down at the center of it, waiting to capture its prey.

Orchard Orbweaver Web

Does the Orchard Orbweaver Bite and How Poisonous is It

They have a mild temperament and are generally not dangerous or harmful towards mankind. They generally do not bite and if at all they do their venom is not said to be poisonous to mankind (from the number of spiders documented).

Orchard Orbweaver Spider

Quick Facts

Other names Orchard spider, Venusta Orchard Spider
Lifespan About a year (like most orbweaver spider species)
Distribution Parts of Southern Canada to Central America
Habitat Woodlands, low shrubby areas and small trees
Common predators Large spiders, wasps and many other large-sized flying insects, small animals and birds
Diet Small moths, flies, leaf insects, flying insects
Venusta Orchard Spider
Orchard Spider

Did You Know

  • Leucauge in Greek means having a bright gleam, while Venusta in Latin translates to beautiful, which is apt for this spider because of its multi-colored pattern and attractive appearance.
  • This species directly attained its nomenclature from Charles Darwin.
  • The males are not killed by the females since they possess fangs with which they protect themselves from their partner during mating, hence having a longer life span.

Image Credits: Bugguide.net, 2.bp.blogspot.com, Thumbs-prod.si-cdn.com, Farm2.staticflickr.com, Objects.liquidweb.services, C1.staticflickr.com

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