top of page

Arachnidées                                         Spiders

Araneus diadematus                Cross Orb-weaver spider

A common garden spider.  This one lived in the veranda all summer (2020).  It spins a neat web in the daytime, then consumes it in the evening for its own energy.  In September it lays hundreds of eggs, then dies.

The first nest is intact and supplied with nice dead flies for when the infant spiders hatch out.

The eggs seen below were found under a cushion Nov 2021.  The silk nest was of a pale golden colour.  Unfortunately I disturbed the nest and inadvertently broke the egg sac.

Young Cross Spider in its morning web devours a bee

Other views of a Cross Spider

Top row: sideways, top side, underside, devouring a bee

Bottom row: Young adult; juvenile with its prey; juvenile in its morning web; old adult female on her last day (she is full of eggs which she will lay in a warm dry place, then die; babies hatching on the side of the compost bin

Argiope bruennicli                                          Wasp spider

Lives in grass or tall flowers where it spins a messy web.  This one was in the vegetable garden (2020)

Crab spider

The crab spider does not spin a web.  Instead it hides behind a flower and, basically white in colour, it slowly changes to the same colour as the flower (camouflage).  This one is turning blue to match the sage.  When an insect lands, the crab spider pounces and injects poison to anaesthetise the prey.  It then sucks out the insect's juices (here the hapless victim is a bee) (2015).

In 1 - 3 the crab spider is looking for a suitable hiding place.  In 4 it arrives on a knapweed which is already occupied by Trichodes alvearius.  the spider leaves this insect strictly alone.  Note the spider's colouring: it has yellow bands left over from the previous flower it inhabited and is now adopting bands of purple to match its host flower.  Suddenly a honey bee arrives; this is really desirable food.  In a very funny scene, the Crab Spider frantically tries to entice the bee over and grab it, but fails utterly and the bee buzzes off, after several clownish positions, quite unaffected.

Diminutive crab spider in a rose

(à identifier)

Longueur tête et corps 0 .5 cm

Here is a white version of the above, on the same Bay tree.  Do they change colour?  Is it a Crab Spider?

Tunnel spider web

The spider itself is large and black.  It is clearly also camera-shy!  Likes grassy areas facing the sun.

Tunnel spider nest

Zoom in to see dozens of tiny spiders

Eresus hermani                                            Ladybird Spider

Espèce en voie de disparition.  La couleur est en fait rouge écarlate.  Vu dans le jardin et dans la véranda en 2021.

On a list of 80 endangered species.  This is a poor photo.  The colour is actually a lovely bright red..

bottom of page