May 12th – St Andrews Cross, Part 2

St Andrews Cross 2

A second appearance for a St Andrew’s Cross spider. This big female has been steadily building near our front door, and only after several weeks has she completed the 4 ‘X’ markings on the web.

The brighter coloured markings are said to reflect UV light, which brings more prey to the web. The white lines are called stabilimentum, and while they supposedly attract prey they potentially also bring predators.

They have an interesting way of deterring unwanted visitors, by pumping the web so it bounces like a trampoline. It’s fun to do (kids love watching it), especially knowing it’s not going to launch off it’s web and attack your face.

I’m also quite glad to have captured this photo of a completed web – its days are numbered in our garden as Zac’s cricket and footy skills are practised regularly.

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