Aculepeira Orb Weaver  (five photos)
Aculepeira packardi
Male & Female


male
On my second trip in five days, I found this male Aculepeira packardi at Promontory Point in a small
 web with a smaller female of the same species.  They split when I came towards them and headed for
 the little branch off to the side of the web.
  © Carol Davis, 7-15-2010

male aculepeira pedipalps
This photo shows the eye arrangement and also the large pedipalps used for mating. The male was
not as skittish as the female and was easier to approach for photos.
© Carol Davis, 7-15-2010

coarse hairs on Aculepeira packardi
You can see on the second set of legs that there are some coarse "spines" that are thicker than
the rest of the hairs on the legs. This is an attribute of the male of the genus Aculepeira, according
to the book Spiders of North America.
  © Carol Davis, 7-15-2010

female Aculepeira
This is the female, or what appears to be the female, that was in the same web with the male.
While the female should be larger, in this case she was smaller with more gray on her legs
and head.  I don't know if she was not quite mature or perhaps this is an immature male.  I'll
never know. 
© Carol Davis, 7-15-2010

female
This is a lightened shot of the female from the side. The shade accounts for the variation in color.
I couldn't get better pictures of her because she was closer to the ground and would inch
 further down the stick every time I approached.  Thanks to Bugguide.net for IDing this species.

© Carol Davis, 7-15-2010


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