Araneus gemmoides

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Jewel spider
Cat Faced Spider.jpg
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Chelicerata
Class: Arachnida
Order: Araneae
Infraorder: Araneomorphae
Family: Araneidae
Genus: Araneus
A. gemmoides
Binomial name
Araneus gemmoides
Chamberlin & Ivie, 1935
A view of A. gemmoides from below.

Araneus gemmoides, commonly known as the jewel spider (a name shared with Austracantha minax) and cat-faced spider (a name shared with Araneus gemma), is a common, outdoor, orb-weaver spider found in Canada and the USA.[1] It is considered harmless and has a low-toxicity venom.[2] A. gemmoides is a useful natural predator for insects.[1][3][4]

A. gemmoides makes its webs near lights, closed spaces, and on the sides of buildings. It can also be found under wood, overhangs, or guarded places such as animal burrows.[5] The species occurs in varying colors, but is easily identified by the two horn-shaped growths on its relatively large abdomen. Its color changes from summer to winter.[2]

The females die within days of laying a single egg sac with hundreds of eggs. Egg sacs can survive over winter, and the emerging spiderlings eat their siblings. The babies ride strands of silk in warm air currents, which are able to transport them to locations miles away.[1]

Females have a larger abdomen and head. Males have much smaller abdomens and longer bodies. Both eat a variety of food, ranging from fish flies, house flies, and mosquitoes to other small spiders.[citation needed]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c staff, the Bug Room (19 August 2004). "Bug Facts Jewel Spider (Araneus gemmoides)". Royal Alberta Museum. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 8 September 2013.
  2. ^ a b Cranshaw, Whitney. "Cat Faced Spider". CSU/Denver County Extension Master Gardener 2010. Archived from the original on 2012-12-12. Retrieved 25 September 2011.
  3. ^ Hoang, Linda (29 August 2012). "Big jewel spiders nothing to worry about, says city entomologist". Bell Media, CTV Edmonton News. Retrieved 8 September 2013.
  4. ^ "Insect of The Week - Cat Face Spider". Washington State University, Department of Entomology. Archived from the original on 1 October 2011. Retrieved 25 September 2011.
  5. ^ Johnson, Prof. Dan L. (2004). "A 'LOST WORLD' BATTLE (...go to heading...) Some other grassland arachnids you might see". University of Lethbridge. Retrieved 25 September 2011.