Tuesday, April 08, 2008

A Very Scary Spider, but Happy


I took this picture last week. This spider set up shop outside of my apartment building and I thought I might photograph it in order to show you how very scary some of our Florida bugs are. As if spiders aren't scary enough on their own, this one has sharp red spikes coming out of its back to make it even more terrifying and threatening. Then when I put the picture in the computer and looked at it all enlarged and up close, I noticed the spider has kind of a smiley face pattern on its armored back, and it was even kind of cute in a way. But still very scary.

20 comments:

Eating Dust said...

Very scary indeed! Yipe!

http://frank.itlab.us/spiny_spider/pictures.html
Looks like it is a Gasteracantha cancriformis

ick, but I cant stop looking at it.

Curlatini, Esq. said...

That spider is not as scary as the roach that was in my bathroom last week. I soaked it with bug spray, but it still managed to take a few laps around the toilet until I smushed it with the trash can. I screamed the entire time.

misha said...

i used to terrified of those (OK - ALL spiders) but in Feb I went kayaking w/ a friend who knows the name of almost every animal in SoFla and I actually held one of those, or let it crawl all over my arm. They are not poisonous or aggressive and are very unlikely to bite and are soo neat close up.

Laura said...

Spiders totally freak me out!

Architect Critic said...

This isn't about your current post, but it's a link to something I thought you would appreciate: Jello recipes from the 70's.

Link

Epiphenita said...

It's a Spiny Orb Weaver Spider. We have them here in Houston, too. I think they are beautiful.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gasteracantha

Seriously, I don't want to pet them but they are gorgeous colors and spotted and spiked...

Anonymous said...

omfg I love these things. <3

Anonymous said...

i like spiders. i would give this spider part of my sandwich and let it listen to my cd player. that spider is KICKASS and ROCKS OUT LOUD.

sincerely,
weird spider broad

Wide Lawns said...

Weird spider broad, I think I love you. I would let you have a bite of my croissant.

Architect - Thank you!!! I love me some Jello recipes.

Pat said...

I spotted one of these spiders just two days ago, weaving it's web between two Christmas Palms and ran right in to identify it. I thought it was commonly known as a crab spider, but that one looked different.

I think these creatures are fascinating and seek out spiders, snakes and whatever else lives here in fla.

Right now, I am obsessed with the little mushroom families that are popping up everywhere now that we are getting some rain on the West Coast. They range in size from Portobella to Lilliputian. No, I won't be making a mushroom saute' any time soon.

Pat

Anonymous said...

Reply: This spider has been identified as Gasteracantha elipsoides. It is completely harmless. The odd shape and colouring is thought to deter birds from eating these spiders. The six spikes on its abdomen vary from red to black. The middle of the abdomen is usually white but often has yellow patches. Gaseracantha elipsoides can be found from North Carolina to Florida and west to California. Thanks to Lisa McAnelly
Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, US
Here's one I missed putting on when it came in. Isn't it a fearsome looking spider with all those spikes? Could be some sort of a Jewelled Spider?

(The spider that is listed as Gasteracantha elipsoides is Gasteracantha cancriformis (spinybacked orbweaver). Apparently Gasteracantha elipsoides is a non-preferred synonym.) Josh Hillman
Got it off google....see
www.rochedalss.qld.edu.au/spiderphotos01.htm

Woozie281

Chance said...

Jesus that's terrifying!

Chiada said...

DUDE!!!! I hate spiders in all shapes, sizes, and forms, and that one just about tops the cake! I never even knew spiders came like that! That would totally freak me out... although I wouldn't kill it. Unless they are in my bedroom and on the ceiling over my bed, I usually leave them alone. Garden spiders are okay, too, so long as their webs don't cross my paths. Walking into a web is the worst.

Violet said...

I'm usually unnerved by spiders, but I kind of like yours. ("Yours," because you invented it, apparently.) I think the smiley face is giving me a false sense of goodwill.

I found you through Ms. Claudia at Fresh Hell, in case you're wondering where I came from.

JenStar said...

Are you sure that isn't a web laying baby crab?

onthegomom said...

I think I just passed out...

Beverly said...

lol I thought you photoshopped it at first! That's one freaky looking spider...

gulfsidebo said...

it's definitely a Spiny Orb Weaver Spider. we have them all around our house (outside of course). they are good spiders to have. we like to call them: spider woman!

SJ said...

I've seen a ton of spiders just like that one lately. They are pretty fierce looking, but kind of beautiful too.

Suzanne said...

Oh! Its an orb weaver. They are cool and not dangerous at all!

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