Insect Identification
Insect Identification

Marbled Orb Weaver - (Araneus marmoreus)

Authored By Staff Writer | Last Updated: 10/8/2015

The ubiquitous and multicolored Marbled Orb Weaver is a spider that works hard and looks good doing it.

The unique 'marbling' pattern of colors on the abdomen, as well as the orange head and black and white legs make the Marbled Orb Weaver visually stunning. Like other orb weavers, this spider creates a new circular webs daily. Marbled Orb Weavers prefer wooded areas near near water sources like creeks, stream, rivers, ponds and marshes. They build their webs on shrubs, reeds or grasses.

Females are twice the size of males and generally stay hidden at the web's perimeter in a mess of dead leaves. One strand of silk extends all the way to her retreat. If it vibrates, she knows her web has caught something. Females lay orange eggs in a silken sac and attach it near their retreat to guard it. If the weather is warm, the spiderlings will hatch soon after. If it is cool or cold, the spiderlings will overwinter in the egg sac and hatch in the spring.

Adults are very active during the summer and autumn months. They tend to fall to the ground if they sense they are in danger. They will try to stay hidden until the threat has passed.

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Category: Spider
Common name: Marbled Orb Weaver
Scientific Name: Araneus marmoreus

  Kingdom: Animalia
   Phylum: Arthropoda
    Class: Arachnida
     Order: Araneae
      Family: Araneidae
       Genus: Araneus
        Species: marmoreus

Adult Size (Length): 6mm to 19mm (0.24in to 0.75in)

Identifying Colors: orange; yellow; black; brown; white

Additional Descriptors: speckled, biting, venomous, stripes, spots

North American Reach (Though Not Limited To*): Alabama; Alaska; Arizona; Arkansas; California; Colorado; Connecticut; Delaware; Florida; Georgia; Idaho; Illinois; Indiana; Iowa; Kansas; Kentucky; Louisiana; Maine; Maryland; Massachusetts; Michigan; Minnesota; Mississippi; Missouri; Montana; Nebraska; Nevada; New Hampshire; New Jersey; New Mexico; New York; North Carolina; North Dakota; Ohio; Oklahoma; Oregon; Pennsylvania; Rhode Island; South Carolina; South Dakota; Tennessee; Texas; Utah; Vermont; Virginia; Washington; West Virginia; Wisconsin; Wyoming; Alberta; British Columbia; Manitoba; New Brunswick; Newfoundland and Labrador; Nova Scotia; Ontario; Prince Edward Island; Quebec; Saskatchewan; Mexico

* Keep in mind that insect reach is not governed by lines on a map and therefore may appear in areas/regions/states beyond those listed above.