After a couple of really cold days…

then some really warm ones…

Lithobates clamitans
Green Frog Lithobates clamitans

Suddenly- there were spiderlings everywhere. I thought they would hang out in their cozy little egg sacs until spring, but they had other ideas.

I first noticed the ones on the front porch. I wasn’t sure if they were moving because they were so tiny and the wind was blowing. I zoomed in and shot some video. Yes! They were crawling around and a Carolina Wren (Thryothorus ludovicianus) was kind enough to add some background music.

They had created an opening and parachuted out on long strands of silk.

Yellow Garden Spider Argiope aurantia
Yellow Garden Spider Argiope aurantia spiderlings emerging from egg sac

The picture below is from October 4th, the day the egg sac was laid.

Yellow Garden Spider Argiope aurantia
Female Yellow Garden Spider Argiope aurantia with egg sac

When I looked down at the porch floor- the boards were dusted with what looked like little grains of sand. Except when I zoomed in on them, I could see their little spider legs.

Yellow Garden Spider. Argiope aurantia
Yellow Garden Spider Argiope aurantia spiderlings

A quick walk around the yard turned up four other Yellow Garden Spider eggs sacs that were open and two that were still intact. I hope our crazy weather swings don’t decrease their chance for survival.

I had been wondering what laid this odd yellow-green egg case:

It has opened up as well. I thought about bringing in a few spiderlings to see who they grew up to be, but I’m not very confident in my spider-raising skills.

My husband did a little research, and it turns out, Spinybacked Orbweavers (Gasteracantha cancriformis) create yellow-green egg cases like this. They were all over our yard chowing on mosquitoes this fall, making them one of my favorite spiders.

Spinybacked Orbweaver Spider Gasteracantha cancriformis
Spinybacked Orbweaver Spider Gasteracantha cancriformis
Spinybacked Orbweaver Spider Gasteracantha cancriformis
Spinybacked Orbweaver Spider Gasteracantha cancriformis

4 comments

    1. They are small (a large one is only about a centimeter across) so a mosquito 🦟 seems to make a nice meal. I saw them catch so many that Spinybacked Orbweavers are now carefully protected in our yard😄

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