marbled orbweaver

(Araneus marmoreus)

               
Conservation Status

IUCN Red List

not yet assessed

marbled orbweaver

NatureServe

NNR - Unranked

Minnesota

not listed

Occurrence

Common

Season

Spring to the first hard freeze in fall

Habitat/Host

Shrubs, tree branches, or tall grass; woodland edges, stream banks, gardens, fences, bridges, and other human-made constructions

Size

Female Body Length: to 11 16

 

Male Body Length: ¼ to

Legspan: 11 16 to 17 16

Photo by Christa Rittberg

Identification

This is a medium-sized orb weaver spider. Females are much larger than males, to 11 16 long and 1 16 to ¼ wide, with a legspan up to 17 16. Males are about half as big, ¼ to long and 1 16 to wide.

Like all spiders, it has two body parts. The hardened plate (carapace) covering the front part (cephalothorax) is light brown or orange with a narrow dark stripe down the middle and on each side.

The abdomen is and rounded and smooth, with no bumps toward the rear. On the female it is large and rounded. On the male it is proportionately smaller and more elongated. The color and pattern of the abdomen is highly variable both regionally and seasonally. It has a white, yellow, orange, brownish, or pink background color. There are always highly contrasted black, gray, and white markings, at least at the front edge, that give it a marbled appearance. These markings may fade as the season progresses.

The legs are 11 16 to 17 16 long and spiny. Males have proportionally longer legs than females. The ends of the legs are banded with black and either clear or white. The third (femur) and fourth (patella) leg segments are often light brown or orange, the same color as the carapace. Sometimes these segments are banded.

The face is small. There are eight eyes, all of them small, in two rows.

 
Similar
Species

 


Food

Flying insects

 
Life Cycle

Several hundred orange eggs are deposited in a mass and then wrapped in silk producing a flattened spherical egg sac. The egg sac is then attached to nearby vegetation or to the spider’s retreat. Some eggs hatch in late summer or fall, others overwinter in egg sacs. Spiderlings disperse by “ballooning”. The climb a branch, blade of grass, or fencepost, and release a long thread of silk. The silk thread catches the wind or even a light breeze and the spiderling floats to a new site.

Adults are active from mid-summer to the first hard freeze in fall.

 
Behavior

They spin a large circular web that hangs vertically. This web is called an “orb”, which gives this family of spiders its common name. The orb is typically a closed hub, 20 to 30 in diameter, with 15 to 35 spokes (radii) that are not sticky. The radii extend to the center of the hub. They are connected to each other by sticky threads that spiral outward from the center. The spider also makes a retreat out of silk near one edge of the orb. The retreat is connected by a signal thread to the center of the web, allowing the spider to feel vibrations of prey. The web is usually consumed and a new web constructed each evening.

They will drop to the ground and hide if approached.

Males are unable to capture prey larger than themselves.


Distribution Distribution Map   Sources: 29, 30.

Comments

 


Taxonomy

Order:

Araneae (spiders)

 

Suborder:

Araneomorphae

 

No Rank:

Entelegynae (eight-eyed spiders)

 

No Rank:

Orbicularia

 

Superfamily:

Araneoidea

 

Family:

Araneidae (orb weavers)

 
Subordinate Taxa

marbled orbweaver (Araneus marmoreus marmoreus)

marbled orbweaver (Araneus marmoreus trapezius [=Araneus marmoreus pyramidatus?])

 
Synonyms

Araneus raji

Araneus raji betulae

Araneus tusigia

 
Common
Names

marbled orb weaver

marbled orbweaver

marbled orb-weaver


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glossary

carapace

The hard, upper (dorsal), shell-like covering (exoskeleton) of the body or at least the thorax of many arthropods and of turtles and tortoises.

 

cephalothorax

The front part of a spider’s body, composed of the head region and the thoracic area fused together. Eyes, legs, and antennae are attached to this part.

 

femur

On insects and arachnids, the third, largest, most robust segment of the leg, coming immediately before the tibia. On humans, the thigh bone.

 

 

       

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Christa Rittberg


  marbled orbweaver   marbled orbweaver
       
  marbled orbweaver    

       
       

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  Marbled Orbweaver (Araneus marmoreus)
Bill Keim
 
   

 

slideshow

     

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Other Videos

 
  Marbled Orb Weaver (Araneus Marmoreus) Handling
IloveSPIDERZ
 
   
 
About

Published on Jan 2, 2015

Here is a video of me handling a Marbled Orb-weaving spider. This was filmed in North Carolina. I know this species also exists in Upstate New York. Thanks for watching!

 
     
  Marbled Orb Weaver Spider
Carl Rasmussen
 
   
 
About

Published on Oct 11, 2013

We saw several of these Spider weaving there webs in Uhwarrie National Forest in North Carolina.

Taken with a Fugi film XP Waterproof camera

 
     
  Marbled Orb Weaver Spider - Araneus marmoreus
socialgarbage2
 
   
 
About

Published on Oct 5, 2011

Found this little lady perched up on my downspout, happily working away on a beetle of some kind. While filming her, I got lucky and got a shot of another beetle flying into her web and her going after it!

for more info on the Marbled Orb Weaver Spider : http://www.cirrusimage.com/Arachnid_marbled_orbweaver.htm

music : Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) Licensed under Creative Commons "Attribution 3.0"
http://incompetech.com/music/

 
     
  Araneus Marmoreus Var. Pyramidatus found in my garden!
PaoloDS01
 
   
 
About

Published on Oct 22, 2014

A beautiful spider that I found in my garden: it's an araneus marmoreus var. pyramidatus. It's big!

 
     
  Marbled orb-weaver - Araneus marmoreus
ookkonaaoulusta
 
   
 
About

Published on Sep 8, 2015

A female Marbled orb-weaver hanging and climbing.

Camera: Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2
Lens: Canon Macro Lens FD 50mm 1:3.5.

 
     

 

Camcorder

         

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