Photo Friday: spider tricks

Today we worked on covered wagons.  (Hoop houses for the raised beds. More on that later.)

On one of our treks to the barn I caught sight of HER as she gracefully climbed down the tree’s trunk.   I ran inside, muck boots and all, to grab my camera to catch her.

She is the biggest, most brightly orange-colored, Orb Weaver I have ever seen anywhere!

Her name is:  Araneus marmoreus or to us simply ~ Orange Marbled Orb Weaver ~

Please do her, and me, the honor of viewing her more closely. I am very excited about my close up skill with her as a specimen!

For those who may wonder, the answer to your question is,


That is my hand holding that leaf.  🙂


For more information and to see the many varieties of Orb Weaver you can visit The Bug Guide Website HERE

24 thoughts on “Photo Friday: spider tricks

  1. Littlesundog says:

    I love watching the orbs this time of year. After our cold snap I fear ours are gone. I had a couple around the house and one big girl in the spent garden. Such beauties! You did a great job… such detail. Did you use a macro lens?

    • Lynda says:

      Lori, no, it was my digital Olympus 40 to 150 mm lens, and I set my camera to macro. In the past my hands were too shaky and I didn’t understand about the actual photo distance for the camera to work in that setting. The closest I can get to a subject is about a foot to a foot and a half. Then I hold my breath and take about 3 shots of each view. I have also learned (duh!) that if there is anything in front of my subject the camera will go into conniptions trying to decide which subject to focus on and then I get a big fat blurry nothing… 😉

      We have had some very cold weather here as well (lowest was about 14 I think) and I don’t know if she will make it. I did see a little squirrel in the tree today who was rebuilding his home for the winter and I am wondering if she was staying warm in his nest till now. Hard to say.

  2. shoreacres says:

    What a beauty — and what great photos you captured. I’ve learned to appreciate spiders over the years, although I still go “oooohhh” when I walk into a faceful of web. You did a good job of capturing the fancy designs on her, as well as the color. Great job! (And with this crazy camera I’ve got now, it took me a while to figure out what really, really close wasn’t going to produce anything but blurs. I’m such a doofus, but at least I’ve learned how to change settings from portrait to macro.)

    • Lynda says:

      Linda, I hate a face-full of web! We have spiny orb weavers in our woods and they always build their webs to span the trail. I never see them until I am in them and they are pretty nearly at face level every time! As for the camera, well I have always looked at the manual that comes with them as a suggestion. 😉 Lately, I have begun to take those suggestions to heart. I guess it does pay off to read the manual. LOL!

    • Lynda says:

      That is what caught my eye, Jane. She was climbing down the trunk of the old oak in our back yard and because of her size and movement I spotted her immediately!

  3. dogear6 says:

    She is GORGEOUS! I’m glad you took pictures to share her with us. Holding her in your hand is not a high risk activity – they aren’t very aggressive spiders especially if you’re not threatening them. Those type of spiders tend to bite only if you put your hand directly on them by accident (like using a rail and not noticing them there).


    • Lynda says:

      Nancy, there are only two spiders I am afraid of. They are Brown Recluse and Black widow! I have only ever been attacked and bitten by a very tiny jumping spider. I was pulling weeds and it just jumped on my wrist and started biting! It didn’t live long after that…

      I’m so glad you like her. 🙂

    • Lynda says:

      I must agree, Simone, she is very spectacular. With so many creatures creeping and crawling the earth it is kinda nice when someone gives one a simple name that describes what you actually see. 😀

  4. Steve Schwartzman says:

    You’ve made it clear, Lynda, why this is called a pumpkin spider, which is an excellent name for this prettily patterned orange creature. You’ve also made it clear you don’t suffer from arachnophobia, or at least not with a non-venomous spider like this.

    It’s good that you’re getting control of your camera in difficult situations. Even expensive cameras can have trouble deciding where to focus, so when I anticipate problems (or notice the focusing mechanism going back and forth without settling down), I switch to manual focusing and rely on my eye to see when the subject looks sharp.

    As for instructions that come with electronic devices, computer folks have long used the initialism RTFM, which stands for Read the (blankety-blank) Manual. On the other side of the coin, though, many manuals are poorly written and don’t have real-world users in mind.

    • Lynda says:

      Thank you, Steve. I’m still not getting the manual focus option. I read it, I try it, and I’m not there yet. That said, nothing is learned without practice! I’ll keep plugging away. My problem is, that I need to remember to try the manual focus when I’m not under the gun with a fast moving specimen. I could take a whole card full of cr@p to practice anytime and then dump it all (it is practice shots after all). I just never think to go do it!

      I always appreciate your comments, Steve.

    • Lynda says:

      Thank you, Mylene! She wasn’t exactly in my hand… she was attached to that leaf. And, I admit that I was watching her like a hawk the whole time. 😉

  5. Nanny says:

    She is beautiful. We had a spider living outside our deck door all summer. We had a discussion and I told her she could stay If she stayed away from the door so she stayed in the corner. fun watching her. Except for the nasty poisonous ones and the web across your face, I usually leave them be.

    • Lynda says:

      Those spiders have an important job to do, don’t they, Margaret? I would hate to think about all the other nasty bugs we’d be swimming in if not for the spiders in our lives (even the nasty ones).

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