It was early evening yesterday when I went out to check on the zinnias and sunflowers. Timing is everything. So is the light. Because the light was just right, I saw a huge web, attached to a couple of zinnias and the purple hyacinth bean vine. And I saw this magnificent creature, spinning silk around her prey.
The prey is a stink bug, I think.
Do you see those markings?
She is at least 4 inches long, including her legs. I think her body is about an inch long. Very big spider. I was in awe. She may be the most beautiful spider I’ve ever seen.
Of course, after taking about 40 pictures, I ran inside to google ‘black and yellow spider.’ A photo, not unlike mine, immediately came up. Her name? Argiope Autantia commonly known as the black and yellow garden spider, or the writing spider, or corn spider. According to Wikipedia, that dense center area of the web is called a stabilimentum. Some think it acts as camouflage, which is what I was thinking. She stayed very close to this area of the web. Others think it might attract prey. Each night, she will consume the circular interior part of the web and then rebuild it the next morning with fresh silk. That stink bug was injected with venom and then the spider wrapped it in cocoon of silk, which is where I came in.
You, dear readers, may not like spiders. I don’t mind them at all. But even if you don’t particularly like them, you have to admit this is a beauty. I was so fortunate to see her, in just the right light. My little camera came through for me. Thanks little Canon bridge camera!
I went out this morning. Sure enough, she rebuilt the center:
I feel like we’re buddies now.
Don’t forget, our weekly party starts tonight. I’ll have the post up and ready for you to link at 8:00 pm EST.
Oh goodness. I forgot to draw a winner for the book giveaway. It’s Lynn! Congratulations, Lynn. I’ll drop you an email.