Female. Woods End Wilderness Preserve, Laguna Beach, Orange County, CA. 9-27-08. © Peter J. Bryant

Silver argiope

Argiope argentata

Araneae: Araneidae

This spectacular orb-weaving spider is common in Southern California in the Fall, especially on prickly-pear plants. The male is much smaller than the female. The spider includes zig-zag structures called stabilimenta in the orb web, probably in order to make it more visible to birds who might otherwise fly into it accidentally and destroy it. Their webs are sometimes occupied by commensal dew-drop spiders.

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Female Underside. Laguna Beach, Orange County, CA. 07/02/05. © Peter J. Bryant

Female. Laguna Beach, Orange County, CA. 07/02/05. © Peter J. Bryant

Female with unusual color pattern. Irvine Park, Orange, Orange County, CA. 11/11/06. © Peter J. Bryant

Female with unusual color pattern. Irvine Park, Orange, Orange County, CA. 11/11/06. © Peter J. Bryant

Female. Peters Canyon, Orange, Orange County, CA. 7-13-09. © Ron Hemberger

Female. Peters Canyon, Orange, Orange County, CA. 7-13-09. © Ron Hemberger

Female. © Peter J. Bryant

Female and male. Stabilimenta on web. © Peter J. Bryant

Nix Nature Center, Laguna Beach, Orange County, CA. 9-9-09. © Ron Hemberger

Nix Nature Center, Laguna Beach, Orange County, CA. 9-9-09. © Ron Hemberger

Male. Donna O'Neil Land Conservancy, San Juan Capistrano, Orange County, California, USA September 10, 2006. © Ron Hemberger

Egg sac. © Peter J. Bryant

Little Sycamore Canyon, Laguna Beach, Orange County, CA. 6/30/07 © Peter J. Bryant

Male and female. Nix Nature Center, Laguna Beach, Orange County, CA. 8-25-09. © Ron Hemberger

Male with female. Aliso Canyon, Orange County, CA. 07/29/09. © Peter J. Bryant

Male with female. Aliso Canyon, Orange County, CA. 07/29/09. © Peter J. Bryant

Nix Nature Center, Laguna Beach, Orange County, CA. 7-16-13. © Ron Hemberger

Nix Nature Center, Laguna Beach, Orange County, CA. 7-16-13. © Ron Hemberger

Nix Nature Center, Laguna Beach, Orange County, CA. 7-16-13. © Ron Hemberger

Nix Nature Center, Laguna Beach, Orange County, CA. 7-16-13. © Ron Hemberger