The orb-web spider and the rest of the family of the same name have an interesting feature in the external structure. The fact is that their abdomen is much larger than that of other spiders, and their external chitinous skeleton is relatively soft. But, despite their vulnerable appearance, orb webs are ruthless hunters with poisonous chelicera.
What does a orb-web spider look like?
The body of the orb-web spider (and any other type of arachnid) is formed by the fusion of two visually distinguishable sections. The first section is the cephalothorax (or prosoma). On it, the orb weaving has as many as six pairs of limbs! The two front pairs are transformed into pedipalps and chelicerae and are located in his oral cavity. The other four pairs are walking legs.
The second section is the back of the body, it is called the abdomen (or opisthosoma). The abdomen of the orb weaving is able to vary quite a lot in its size due to the high elasticity of the external skeleton. In addition, after a good meal or before the female orb weaving begins to lay eggs, it (the abdomen) can vary quite a lot in its size, increasing almost twice in relation to its usual size.
The orb-web spider has a black abdomen with yellow spots. Its walking legs, starting from the base of the abdomen, are colored yellow, which then turns into black. By the way, females of orb weaving have much longer walking legs than males, and chelicerae are filled with deadly poison! This coloring suggests that these spiders are quite poisonous creatures.
Where does the orb-web spider live and what does it eat?
In general, the habitats of the orb-webs' favorite habitat depend on the habitats of flying insects. It is they that form the basis of the nutritious diet of the orb weaving. Shrubs, forests and city gardens are best suited for this: the abundance of various flowers, like a magnet, attracts insects to them - the food of the orb-webs.
Orb-web spiders during the mating season
The ability of spiders to weave their web has fascinated scientific and philistine minds for a long time. The ability to weave trapping nets is one of the most amazing manifestations of the life of the representatives of the class of arachnids. Orb-webs need this skill not only for catching prey, but also for mating.
Seeing the female, the orb-web spider hurries to approach her. However, he does it in a special way: he goes through his webs in a certain order. This allows the female to correctly understand what kind of “groom” he has come to see her, as well as to make sure of the sincerity of his intentions. Before mating, the female orb-weaving spider treats the web with specific pheramone. This must be done in order for the male to make sure in advance of the location of the female to him.
Then the male of the orb weaving slightly touches the front legs of the female and begins to quickly weave an invisible web around her. This is how he demonstrates his skills. After that, the most dangerous moment in mating of orb-weaving spiders comes: the male begins to inject seminal fluid through special pedipalps. After intercourse has been made, the male needs to quickly leave the female. Especially slow "suitors" turn into a hearty meal.