Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The Demise of a Spider

Recent mornings have been a bit too chilly to enjoy my coffee on the front porch.
As well, we seem to have been too busy to sit still for long.  It has been a week or more of hitting the floor running [or hobbling grumpily in my case.]
Since the two spiders created their webs by the front steps I have kept an interested eye on their activitites.
The busy spider, she of the four egg sacks, has kept her web tidy with a snack or two rolled in silk and waiting to be absorbed as a meal.
It was with surprise that I noted the web was empty on Thursday morning.
I knelt on the grass and gently moved aside the bowed stems of sedum, expecting to find the spider intact, but shriveled and brittle.
I found a bit of black and yellow patterned husk which might have been her remains.

By the weekend I noticed that the "sister" spider was busier than she has been during her time in the second web about a foot deeper in the clump of sedum.
To my surprise I discovered that she had spun an elaborate 'bridge" between the two webs and was neatly reparing the deserted web.

She now appears to be exclusively using her sister's web.
I wonder if she will produce more egg sacks.
It is cooler tonight on the heels of a rain shower.
Time is running out for the insects which have flitted and whirred and crawled around and through our space during the summer months.
The butterflies have disappeared.
The scraping song of the cicadas sounds only faintly on a warm afternoon.
The two spiders [argiope aurantia] have provided a delightful interest.
Perhaps their "babies" will continue a generational residency by the porch steps come spring.

The look of a fall morning.
The spider webs are just out of sight where the walk stops at the porch steps.


  1. Dear MM:
    I admire your love and concern for the spiders, but sadly, can't share your love. I suspect the one spider ate the other in the struggle for the survival of the fittest. Ah well. I'm sure there will be plenty more where those came from -- and they are good for the garden.

  2. Chris: I surprised myself by becoming so interested in these spiders. I most certainly don't appreciate any kind of insect in the house. It did occur to me that the one spider might have finished off the other--there's something rather predatory about her appropriating the dead spider's web.

  3. I'm not crazy about spiders either, but we leave them alone for the most part.

    Love your fall scenery. A joy to behold way down here where one season just passes into the next one without much fanfare.

    Have a great day ~ FlowerLady

  4. It has been so interesting following the journey of your spiders ... and I have learnt a thing or two