Eriophora transmarina aka Common Garden Orb Weaver Spider, Australian Garden Orb Weaver Spider (?)
My Garden, Adelaide, South Australia –
Photos & Text: Michal Dutkiewicz
I found this spider in a Cullen australasicum, a native pea bush on the side of the road between the towns of Keyneton and Sedan in the Murraylands. I am not absolutely certain if this is another version of this species – There are so many! Each of us have many Australian Orb Weavers in our gardens – They are abundant! They have many different patterns and colours – As far as I know, these are not separate subspecies, but adaptations individuals make to camouflage themselves – I don’t know the mechanism by which this is achieved, but with each new moult, they can change their colour and pattern to blend in with their surroundings of the site they rest on during the day. Like other orb weavers, they industriously spin their new web every night and take up a position in its centre – They are not considered harmful to humans, but we all know the feeling of walking into one of these webs!
Eriophora circulissparsus aka Araneus circulissparsus
Mount Barker (Longleat Property) – December 15th, 2014
Photos & Text: Karin Dawson
Of the 30 spider genera in Australia, Eriphora is the largest with 110 recorded species. This genus comprises the Orb Weavers, which construct distinctive wheel-shaped webs at dusk. None of the Eriphora are venomous to humans.
Eriophora circulissparsus (formerly Araneus circulissparsus) is a pretty light green orb weaver with a yellow abdomen, beautifully patterned with red and green markings. This is a nocturnal species, and not often seen. I have encountered E. circulissparsus three times in my garden over the last several months. The first two sightings were during the day, and the spiders were resting amongst daisy flowers and leaves. The third sighting was at sunset, where the spider was hard at work constructing her web.
E. circulissparsus is a relatively small species, with the female averaging 5 – 7 mm in diameter, though each of my three individuals measured 8 – 10 mm.