Tangled Webs

I recently saw the large and rather fantastic tropical orb weaver Eriophora ravilla hiding in some leaves on the side of a trail. As you can see below, it’s a very cool find. At the same time, any new discovery has the potential to open up a can of worms. First, it was a bit tricky to identify this spider because it comes in a variety of colors, so more than half of the photos of this species that I found online don’t look too much like it. Second, the male is smaller and looks considerably different, sometimes much like a spider from the Eustala genus, which is making me wonder if some spiders I had previously assumed were Eustala are in fact the males of this species.

As usual, there are many mysteries and few easy answers.

One Response to “Tangled Webs”

  1. Grand Case Spiders and Everything Else | Les Fruits De Mer Says:

    […] A bit away from the edge of the pond, I found another of what I think is Eriophora ravilla, a large, robust orb-weaver that I usually see hiding in the leaves at one corner of its web. This one has a strikingly different color than the last one I saw. […]