Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada
Clickable Guide
Moths Butterflies Flies Caterpillars Flies Dragonflies Flies Mantids Cockroaches Bees and Wasps Walkingsticks Earwigs Ants Termites Hoppers and Kin Hoppers and Kin Beetles True Bugs Fleas Grasshoppers and Kin Ticks Spiders Scorpions Centipedes Millipedes

Calendar
Upcoming Events

Information, insects and people from the 2019 BugGuide Gathering in Louisiana, July 25-27

Discussion, insects and people from the 2018 gathering in Virginia, July 27-29

Photos of insects and people from the 2015 gathering in Wisconsin, July 10-12

Photos of insects and people from the 2014 gathering in Virginia, June 4-7.

Photos of insects and people from the 2013 gathering in Arizona, July 25-28

Photos of insects and people from the 2012 gathering in Alabama

Photos of insects and people from the 2011 gathering in Iowa


Spiderlings

I've been seeing a lot of baby spiders emerging lately. Not any species in particular, just sort of across the board I guess. Why would spiders hatch this time of year ? Isn't that kind of backward since winter will soon be here ?
Why wouldn't they be born in spring or summer rather than fall ?

Good question...
with no clear answer except to say they've been sitting in an egg sac for the last month and it's now time for them to move on. Spiders don't have the same life-history patterns you might be used to with other animals.

Most (not all) female orb-weavers create an egg sac in the fall, and the spiderlings hatch and overwinter as 2nd instars inside the sac. The female might die shortly after egg sac construction, or later on in a very harsh winter, or still be alive the following spring in warmer climates. However, she doesn't necessarily die "at the first frost", despite Eric's claims.

Jumping spiders are a mixed bag. Larger Phidippus often need around 7-10 months to reach maturity, which could be reached at any time of the year. I've seen P. audax in the wild start a second egg sac after the spiderlings from her first had all left. From egg to spiderling dispersal is a three-month commitment for her, times two. Seen the same thing with P. clarus. Females might live up to two years.

The male Zygoballus spiderlings I raised this year took just over two months to go from 2nd instar to maturity. Quick! The females required an extra two to three weeks as usual. But by late fall the free-living adult males will be dead, and the adult females won't lay eggs until next summer. As if on a schedule.

Pelegrina overwinters here as adults and subadults; eggs in very early spring. Maevia seems to have no regard for the calendar; I can find almost all stages at any time of the year. Neon, Synemosyna and other very small jumpers... almost like bunny rabbits; very small broods pumped out over and over again all year long, and each takes just a couple months to reach maturity. Sarinda lays two egg sacs in July, 1-2 weeks apart. Haven't figured that one out yet.

I could go on, but it's just more of the same thing. I know very little about the other spider families. And what I've written on jumpers is just based on my own observations, which could be flawed.

What genera are you seeing right now?

 
Well....
I really appreciate the input and education ! Very cool stuff.

I'm seeing major amounts of Common house spiders - Achaearanea tepidariorum with hatching spiderlings, a lot of flower spiders - Misumenops, several lynx - adults and spiderlings, lots of orb weavers (particularly Neoscona crucifera, they're all over the place but mostly adults that just seemed to "appear" out of nowhere), lots of nursery web adults - Pisaurina mira, I've found a few wolf spiderlings running around, there are many funnel webs all over the place. I haven't seen any jumper spiderlings but the adults are everywhere also.

Maybe I need to spray....

Comment viewing options
Select your preferred way to display the comments and click 'Save settings' to activate your changes.