Guardian Nature School Team Contact Blog Project Noah Facebook Project Noah Twitter

A global community of nature enthusiasts
photographing and learning about wildlife

Join Project Noah!
nature school apple icon

Project Noah Nature School visit nature school

Orb Weaver

Metepeira sp.


This is a tiny orb weaver spider, from the genus "Metepeira". She's only about 5mm long (body and head). Possibly species "spinipes" but I'm not sure, so I'm leaving it as a genus i.d. Shown is a female, with sharply pointed legs, and bulbous abdomen. Coloration is a mix of white, tan, grey, and brown - with chevron pattern on abdomen.


Metepeira can be found "found from Argentina to Canada, including Caribbean islands." (Wiki) They range into all types of terrain, including deserts, shore, and mountains. Typically they aren't seen because of their small size and habit of hiding in web-built structures that provide camouflage.


It's the web that makes this spider so interesting! Metepeira build orb webs and then live in raised webs off the orbs. In the second picture, you can see this spider hiding in her trash nest, holding tension on a drag line. If prey gets caught in the web she'll release tension to help trap the prey, and then run down quickly to go deal with it. This particular spider had found a really successful hunting ground! (Thanks to Bug Guide for the genus i.d. - my first Metepeira pics!)

Species ID Suggestions

Sign in to suggest organism ID

No Comments

Spotted by

Rolling Hills, California, USA

Spotted on Oct 30, 2014
Submitted on Oct 31, 2014

Noah Guardians
Noah Sponsors
join Project Noah Team

Join the Project Noah Team