Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Botter Spinnekop

The 'Botter Spinnekop' (Argiope Australis)

The Botter Spinnekop, as it is known in some parts of South Africa, is also known as the Argiope Australis.

From what I gather their venom is not known to be harmful to man, and the only way they can really bite you is by trying to take them from their web. They are pretty beneficial for keeping down insect numbers.

Here is some more information from other websites:

"The larger female has a yellow and black scalloped abdomen. The legs are thin and black striped. They support the spider to normally hang upside down with its two back and two front legs together. From a distance the spider appears to have four instead of eight legs. The head is silvery grey. The males are far smaller and quite insignificant in comparison.
These spiders are harmless to man." 

"A common spider found in many gardens and in the fynbos where it builds its characteristic orb web with a zig-zag white silk cross pattern in the centre."

"The female Argiope spends her time hanging head down in the centre of her web, her two pairs of forelegs held together and stretched out forwards mirrored by the hind two pairs stretching out backwards, forming an X."

"The Black and Yellow Garden Spider (Argiope australis) is a common spider found in in the fynbos and is a member of the orb-web group of spiders. The larger female has a yellow and black scalloped abdomen. These spiders are harmless to man. They construct large wheel-like webs (orbs). As a diurnal species they continually repair their webs, using them for a number of days. The webs, mainly stretched across bushes, are normally built within one metre of the ground. The webs occupy the aerial passage amongst vegetation in the path of flying insects. The spider sits on the web waiting for prey to get trapped."

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