Family: Araneidae ID: Koch, 1871
Habitat and Biology
This is a large robust spider which builds a large, strongly constructed orb web to catch its prey of mostly flying insects. The web is usually constructed in the evenings and is sometimes unexpectedly encountered by humans. The spider rests upside down in the centre of the web. At dawn the web is often taken down. The spider then rests on nearby foliage with legs drawn in and is well camouflaged. The eggs, which are laid by the female in late summer to autumn, are encased in a fluffy silken cocoon and attached to foliage. The lifespan of the garden orb-weaver is approximately twelve months. It is a widespread species having been recorded from all states except Tasmania.
Male: Similar to female.
Female: Bases of legs bright red, rest of legs and cephalothorax reddish brown with long white hairs. Abdomen brown, usually with darker foliate pattern and sometimes with white spots or stripe.
Typically with a triangular abdomen with two noticeable humps towards front.
Large, strongly constructed orb web.
The bite of the garden orb-weaver is not considered dangerous. Symptoms may include localised mild pain and swelling, nausea and dizziness.