Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Big orange spider

"Look at that big spider!"

"What spider? Where? I don't see .... HOLY SHIT! That's a big spider!"
Vicki's post about her own mystery spider reminded me that the Sergeant spotted this humongous one on Sunday.
It's the biggest spider I've ever seen in Colorado (not including Rosie). Its body was maybe the size of a quarter. I guess I should have held a coin up to see.
I've been poking around online, and I think it might be an orb weaver. And maybe that's what all those baby spiders became. Do you know spiders enough to say?


  1. I don't, although I've been Googling them because we've had some really big spiders weaving enormous webs on the back porch lately. I came up with Orb Weaver for ours too, although she didn't look that much like yours... maybe that's the go-to spider definition and there are different varieties?

    Anyway, she's very pretty.

  2. We had a large similar spider on our balconey a few years ago and it ended up laying a huge egg and then shrunk a bit. Ours may have been a bit more striped but this spider could just be expecting.

  3. Aha! That's exactly it. I googled the name and found a few more examples that look just like this one. Thanks, Ambrosia!

    It does appear to be harmless unless severely provoked, and even then its bite is like a mild wasp sting. So best to leave it alone to eat more garden pests.

  4. Yikes

    I really dont like spiders and that one would of sent me running, no way I would fo gotten a photo even with a telephoto !

  5. I applaud you for finding out what kind and deciding to leave him/her be - most spiders are harmless and do help by eating other insects.

  6. Eeekkkkkk ::::runs away screaming like a girl:::::

  7. Well, it didn't look like the jumping type, so I wasn't too scared of it! As long as it stays outside.

    Even inside, I'd be more likely to just catch it with a cup and piece of paper than try to kill it. I don't like to think of the mess that would make.

  8. Welcome. : ) I don't like spiders, but I kinda have a thing for cat-faces.

  9. Kitt, this fascination with bug things has me totally intrigued.

    I've started taking pics of the wee wild creatures out at the Ranch but I'll tell you - these small critters are hard to photograph! I was much better when I was dealing with real film.

  10. We have these in New Mexico and I'm always seeing them hanging upside down in their webs. They act like orb weavers in that respect and they do eat a LOT of bugs! Yours looks to have the "points" on the body too! We've never had any problems with them bothering us, the dogs or the cats.

    Thanks Ambrosia for solving our mystery!

  11. Titus, the secret is the macro setting on your camera. And a subject that keeps still.

    Glad you found your answer, Jato!

    It's funny, this post has turned out to be very popular. You'd be amazed how many people are out there Googling "orange spider."

  12. Hi Kitt,

    I am one of those googling for orange spider ;^)

    Yesterday, in my garden, I found a (not so big) orange spider and am looking to identify it:


    I'm thinking it must be -like yours- of the genus Araneus. However, my garden in not in Colorado, but on a small island in the southern Caribbean.


    Turtuga Blanku

    * Solar Power Music at: www.TurtugaBlanku.com *

  13. My grandson Dawson and I just found one of these on our front porch. It looks a lot like a crab. Since most seem to think it's harmless we decided to keep her ( at a distance) and have named her Charlotte.

  14. Hey, I found this post looking to identify a spider that's been hanging out on my porch - turns out it's the same kind! It's been seriously freaking me out, so it's good to hear that it's harmless.

  15. I found one of these two and ran across your blog when trying to figure out what species it is. While a lot of the other araneus spiders look similar, the picture you have is exactly right.

    Really cool looking spider.

  16. It's been raining a lot here in denver, hence I found one of these in my house. When I captured it to release it outside, it made a hissing/growling noise at me! Glad to know what kind it is!

  17. We saw one of these this morning--looks like it's a "Spotted Orb Weaver." http://www.spiders.us/species/neoscona-crucifera/