Black and Yellow Garden Spider - Argiope aurantia
Trinity County, Texas, USA
July 5, 2006
I determined the species using Thomas Eisner's "For Love of Insects" (fascinating book!), and I used BugGuide.net to identify her as a female.
Similar to other bug enthusiasts on this website, I sometimes observe Argiopes shake their web, especially when I draw close (usually within 3 feet). Eisner says this is a defensive behavior: "...[the spider] engages in a bobbing action...making itself a blurred target that is hard to grasp" (Eisner, 227).