Marbled Orb Weaver (Araneus Marmoreus)

in Amazing Nature2 years ago


I have always paid attention to spiders in general, and I don't like to harm them if I can help it. We only have a couple of species here in our environment that are actually considered harmful to humans (black widows, brown recluse), but I rarely if ever see those. I even have a habit of saying "Excuse me, grandmother!" if I walk into a web, or strand of a web, or have to disturb a spider. Finding one of my friends in the house means a careful relocation outside, with an apology of why she can't live in the house.

Some of the indigenous people here on Turtle Island tell stories about grandmother spider weaving the first alphabet for humans in her web. She represents creation, and weaving. Many of you may be familiar with dream catchers, which also represent spider webs. Spiders remind us of the infinite possibilities of creation with how their two sections make an 8 (infinity symbol), and her legs represent the four directions on a medicine wheel and the four winds of change.

Personally I really love spiders, and recently I have been learning a lot more scientifically about them because of a scientist friend here in East Tennessee. She is a chronobiologist, which means she studies circadian rhythms. Every organism on earth has an internal clock, that regulates things like when you sleep, when you eat, cell regeneration, etc. Most creatures have a circadian rhythm that falls pretty closely in line with the 24 hour cycle of an Earth day. However, certain spiders do not, and so she and her team are studying several spider species to understand more about these biological rhythms. It's all pretty amazing, really.

(note: the circadian rhythms of the marbled orb weaver have not been studied to my knowledge. Orb weavers in general seem to have a 50/50 chance of having a clock closer to 24 hours, but can even vary individually in the spiders themselves...)

A lot of the orb weavers here in Appalachia are the busiest in the late summer and autumn months, and some of the species and webs I have seen over the years are absolutely gorgeous. It's been a fun game occasionally to sit on the porch and throw different insects into the orb weaver's magnificent webs and watch the process of life and death unfold right before my eyes.

This particular grandmother was hanging out on my exterior door the other morning. She seemed quite content to rest and rejuvenate on our door for several hours, unperturbed by our comings and goings. Her colors are just perfect for this time of year, and it did not go unnoticed by me that she was in my sphere of observation. For those of you who have read other of my posts you will have discovered that I am very much immersed in the world of nature much more than the world of humans, and I have a fun mix of esoteric and scientific thought processes. She seemed to be a blessing of the autumn, and a reminder to work on my own web weaving (action to match intent), that the timing is ripe for me to catch some of the energies that are floating around me. Her comfort to be resting on the literal door of my home, my physical sacred space, in all her autumnal color glory, was a wonderful confirmation of success at creating a peaceful home that offers respect for life.


For more information on the marbled orb weaver, check out:

Of course, these photos are my own.

Thanks for reading! Remember...




Wow she is a beauty, I love spiders as well, and have quite a few living in my truck, I am happy to share my space with them, they are mostly on the ceiling. Fascinating reading about the circadian rhythms. Thanks for that xxxxx

That sure is a beautiful spider. I myself am starting to look differently at spiders and insects in general myself. It's hard to get to the stage to enjoy flies and mosquitoes though haha, no matter how hard I try and that is one of the reasons why I don't mind spiders haha

We appreciate your work and your post has been manually curated by zoology team (oscurity,nelinoeva) on behalf of Amazing Nature Community. Keep up the good work!

I love it when fall rolls around and there are plenty of plump orb weavers to find. This one's pattern is amazing.

Hello @freemotherearth!

nice photos and ecological description!
We appreciate your work and your post was manually curated by @none! from the DNA team!

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