Apr 102010

European garden spider (Araneus diadematus), diadem spider, or cross spider

These pinhead-sized spiders hatched in my yard. If you look closely, you can see the yolk sacs still attached to their tiny bellies.

The little spiders stay close to each other the first few days, until they exhaust the yolk sac and start hunting. Their first few webs are disorganized sticky messes and the little spiders seemed rather surprised by the whole thing, for which I couldn’t blame them one bit.

In Seattle, many spider species overwinter, and in this case Mom Spider hovered nearby and anxiously gathered the little ones together and hustled them away when she felt I was too close to them.

A few weeks later these little guys dispersed all over the house, and I spent the next six months routing them from unlikely places (such as my shoes or the silverware drawer) and relocating them, under protest, outside.

Captured with my beloved Raynox macro lens. I wish I’d had a tripod handy, but when a photo presents itself, you just take it, fancy equipment or not.