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Species Mecynogea lemniscata - Basilica Orbweaver

Small Spider - Orchard Spider? - Mecynogea lemniscata spider - Mecynogea lemniscata Basilica Orbweaver - Mecynogea lemniscata - female Basilica Orbweaver - Mecynogea lemniscata - female Orbweaver of Some  Kind II - Mecynogea lemniscata Courtship and mating of the Basilica Orbweaver - Mecynogea lemniscata - male - female Bug Sack - Mecynogea lemniscata Mecynogea lemniscata
Classification
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Chelicerata (Chelicerates)
Class Arachnida (Arachnids)
Order Araneae (Spiders)
Infraorder Araneomorphae (True Spiders)
No Taxon (Entelegynes )
Family Araneidae (Orb Weavers)
Genus Mecynogea
Species lemniscata (Basilica Orbweaver)
Other Common Names
Basilica Spider
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Allepeira conferta (1).
Explanation of Names
The latin name, lemniscata, meaning "hanging ribbons", appears to be descriptive of the eggsacs.
The common name comes from the shape of the snare, resembling the domed ceilings inside some cathredrals (2).
Size
Female 6-9mm, Male 4-6.6mm (1)(3)(2)
Females to 13mm according to Levi (4)
Identification
Female


web & egg sac
Range
District of Columbia south to Florida and west to Colorado. (3)(1) The guide contains photos from points as far as mid-state New York, suggesting the range extends further north.
Habitat
Found in forest understories and bushes (3)(4)(2). I've photographed them in Leyland cypress adjacent to my house in Georgia. Females create an orb web pulled into a dome with an irregular shaped web nearby where she waits (3)(1).
Season
Summer and Autumn (2)
Life Cycle
The female attaches egg sacs to each other vertically in her dome shaped web.
Remarks
Specimens have been found in mud dauber nests (3).
There appears to be disagreement about whether the snares contain sticky silk. Jackman says no (3), but Edwards and Marshall say yes (2).
Print References
Excellent photos and information in Florida's Fabulous Spiders (2).
Internet References
Some photos at Florida Nature and Nick's Spiders.
Works Cited
1.How to Know the Spiders
B. J. Kaston. 1978. WCB/McGraw-Hill.
2.Florida's Fabulous Spiders
Sam Marshall, G. B. Edwards. 2002. World Publications.
3.A Field Guide to Spiders and Scorpions of Texas
John A. Jackman. 2002. Gulf Publishing.
4.Spiders and Their Kin: A Golden Guide from St. Martin's Press
Herbert W. Levi, Lorna R. Levi, Nicholas Strekalovsky. 2001. St. Martin's Press.