Black And Yellow Garden Spider

Black And Yellow Garden Spider

Article by Graeme Stephens

The black and yellow spider is commonly found all over the world, except in extreme climatic conditions. So, do not panic if you see black and yellow garden spider in South Carolina or other parts of the United States. In North America, this spider is known by other common names, like writing spider and corn spider. The web created by this spider species is unique, and follows a specific pattern like writing, hence the common name writing spider is given.

Black and Yellow Garden Spider: Taxonomy

Regarding taxonomy of black and yellow garden spider, Argiope aurantia is the scientific name of this spider species. The same genus comprises other colorful spider species, which are large-sized and commonly found in temperate climatic conditions. These garden spiders prefer sunny and less windy areas. The biological classification of this garden spider according to hierarchy is given below.

Kingdom – AnimaliaPhylum – ArthropodaClass – ArachnidaOrder – AraneaeFamily – AraneidaeGenus – ArgiopeSpecies – A. aurantia

Black and Yellow Garden Spider: Identification

If you find a spirally vertical and orb web that radiates from a center, most probably it is spun by the black and yellow garden spider. It is highly complex, as compared to other spider webs. Another fact about the web of this spider species is it spreads over large areas, which at times measures about 3 feet across. Coming to identifying spider, there is drastic difference in the size between male and female yellow garden spiders.

The adult male measures 8-9 mm in length, while the female grows to more than 19-28 mm at maturity. In addition to large body size and spinning complex web pattern, the yellow garden spider possesses specific features, that make it very easy to identify. As the name suggests, the egg-shaped abdominal part is adorned with distinctive black and yellow markings. When viewed in detail, you will see minute silvery hair in the cephalothorax region. The legs are basically black in color, with red and yellow markings near the body.

Black and Yellow Garden Spider: Life Cycle

The black and yellow garden spider prefers to spin its web in gardens, meadows, fields, shrubs, between tall grasses and tall plants. While female makes large orb web (circle shaped web), the male spins a smaller web in the periphery of the large web, which is characterized by a distinctive, white zig-zag pattern across it. Breeding of this spider species occurs once in a year.

The adult female lays eggs after fertilization and dies. About 300-1,400 eggs are encased in a brownish papery sac that measures about 25 mm in dimension. As soon as fall season arrives, the eggs hatch into young spiders, but overwinter inside the sac itself until favorable environmental conditions arrive. With the coming of the spring season, the young black and yellow garden spiders disperse to other areas. Within the next fall, they attain maturity and are ready for copulation.

Black and Yellow Spider: Are they Poisonous?

Many gardening enthusiasts share the same story of being bitten by black and yellow garden spider. The term poisonous or venomous cannot be applied for this spider type, as it causes no medical symptoms, like other insect bites. It stings humans and predators only when disturbed, and this spider bite is like a bee sting and nothing more. When the black and yellow garden spider senses danger in its way, it drops down in the ground and hides for some time.

The diet of the yellow and black spider includes various types of flying insects, which are trapped in its silky web. It feeds on flies, moths, grasshoppers, beetles, bees, wasps and aphids. Most active during the daytime, it hangs in the middle of the web waiting for its prey to get trapped. Coming to common predators of this garden spider, its population is greatly affected by lizards, shrews, large wasps and birds.

Despite its scary appearance, the black and yellow garden spider is harmless. Instead, it is beneficial for biological control of other destructive pests in the garden, such as aphids, mosquitoes, beetles, etc. The only concern is spinning large orb webs in gardens or other traffic areas that disturbs passerby. Hence, adopting pest control measures for black and yellow spider is not necessary.

For more information please go to insect control and fly control

About the Author

Graeme Stephens has been running the largest owned carpet cleaning company in new Zealand for 24 years. IICRC qualified “master restoration

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