02 September 2007

New neighbor

A couple of families have moved into the rental houses on my street, but the coolest new neighbor lives in my own yard. A member of gasteracantha cancriformis seems to have built a new living space across my front walkway, which may or may not be the best idea s/he ever had.

G. cancriformis, as you may guess, is a spider. The "cancri" part of its name comes from the fact that the spider has what appears to be a 'crab' body. I know this because mom & dad & I went out to photograph the spider & its enormous web earlier this evening with little success. It was dark, and we're not exactly professionals at this. (I'll try again in the morning....)

The one photo that did sort of come out is shown above, a very close-up of the spider in the center of its amazing web. The web itself is a couple of feet across and dotted with brilliant white streaks. It's truly a work of art that I hope to be able to share.

Until I saw the photo all cropped for show & tell, I thought we were dealing with one of the much larger Texas banana spiders (Argiope aurantia), but those are much larger and scarier than this little guy/gal. Anyway, this one is plenty big enough.

I'll try in the morning for some better shots of the beautiful web. I picked up a few hints off the Web (Google: "how to photograph spider webs").

By the way, these spiders apparently come in a variety of colors. I'm not sure why this one has chosen to match my lovely yellow Mini heh

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