Spiny orb-weaver

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Spiny orb-weaver
Spiny backed orbweaver spider.jpg
G. cancriformis
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Euarthropoda
Subphylum: Chelicerata
Class: Arachnida
Order: Araneae
Infraorder: Araneomorphae
Family: Araneidae
Genus: Gasteracantha
Sundevall, 1833[1]

See text.

Spiny orb-weavers is a common name for Gasteracantha, a genus of spiders. They are also commonly called spiny-backed orb-weavers, due to the prominent spines on their abdomen (cf. genus Isoxya). These spiders can reach sizes of up to 30 mm in diameter (measured from spike to spike). Although their abdomen is shaped like a crab shell with spikes, it is not to be confused with a crab spider.

Often brightly colored, spiny orb-weavers have a broad, hard abdomen that can be white, orange, or yellow with red markings. [2] The female shell is ringed by six red or orange spines, whereas the smaller male lacks the spiny projections and instead has four to five stubby dark projections. [3]

Yellow spiny back orb weaver spider. Photographed in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA

Orb-weavers' bites are generally harmless to humans. [4]

Gasteracantha geminata


As of April 2016, the World Spider Catalog accepted the following species:[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Gen. Gasteracantha Sundevall, 1833", World Spider Catalog, Natural History Museum Bern, retrieved 2016-04-22 
  2. ^ "Beneficial spiders in the landscape: #23 Spiny Orb Weaver Spider". aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu. Beneficials in the Garden & Landscape. 
  3. ^ Weber, Lynne; Weber, Jim (2011). Nature Watch Austin: Guide to the Seasons in an Urban Wildland. Amazon Digital Services LLC: Texas A&M University Press. p. 128. 
  4. ^ "Urban Spider Chart". 

External links[edit]

Media related to Gasteracantha at Wikimedia Commons
Data related to Gasteracantha at Wikispecies