Insect Identification
Insect Identification

Silver Garden Spider - (Argiope argentata)

Authored By Staff Writer | Last Updated: 10/15/2015

Silver Garden Spiders are a precious resource to have in a garden or park. They consume plant-harming insects and add a gleaming luster that few others can offer.

The Silver Garden Spider can be found in the warmer, southern parts of North America. Young spiders can survive a frost, but that hardiness diminishes with age. They reside in parks, gardens or other open areas that have plants.

The silver color on this helpful spider develops over time and this orb weaver can grow to be quite large in the garden. (Note: the size references for insects and arachnids do not include legs!)

They weave their webs between plants or cacti and have an X-shaped stabilimentum (a zigzag pattern of thicker silk in the web). The stabilimentum aids in identifying it as a part of the garden spider family. They can be found sitting head-down in the middle of their webs.

Few female spiderlings survive to maturity, but most of the males do, are they are usually eaten by a female after mating with her.

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Category: Spider
Common name: Silver Garden Spider
Scientific Name: Argiope argentata

  Kingdom: Animalia
   Phylum: Arthropoda
    Class: Arachnida
     Order: Araneae
      Family: Araneidae
       Genus: Argiope
        Species: argentata

Adult Size (Length): 3mm to 16mm (0.12in to 0.63in)

Identifying Colors: silver; black; yellow; red; orange; brown

Additional Descriptors: metallic, silver, large, biting, venomous, shiny

North American Reach (Though Not Limited To*): Alabama; Arizona; California; Florida; Georgia; Louisiana; Mississippi; New Mexico; Oklahoma; Texas; 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.