Aculepeira Orb Weaver
Aculepeira packardi

"A Beacon in the Desert"

desert spider
It was hard to miss this beautifully-colored orb weaver in the middle of the dry, fox-tail covered desert at
Promontory Point, Utah.   She shown like a beacon and I had never seen one like it with this orange coloring. 

beautiful orange spider
The spider was not spooked in the least when I started taking photos. 

side view of aculepeira
This is just a side view of the spider.  I went over to another bush after this to take a picture of a
blister beetle I had seen land and when I turned back to the spider, this is what I saw:

beetle with aculepeira
  Shehad captured a Cuckoo Wasp and the coloring of that wasp only added to the beauty of the spider. Cuckoo
Wasps were en masse in the area, moving through all the bushes quickly like they
were scanning for food.  All photos © Carol Davis, 7-11-2010

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