Venusta Orchard SpiderVenusta Orchard Spider – Nikon D70, handheld, f5.6, 1/60, ISO 200, Nikkor 70-300mm VR at 300mm, natural light

I couldn’t think of many spooky, creepy or crawly things that I photograph that scare me to post for Halloween but some people are afraid of spiders so I thought I’d post a few in honor of the scariest holiday here in the United States. Quite frankly I think some people are scarier than spiders though.

I photographed this Venusta Orchard Spider (Leucauge venusta) while walking on the boardwalk at Sawgrass Lake County Park in Pinellas County, Florida. It is a small spider that makes a large web in comparison with its size. I actually think they are kind of pretty not creepy.

Black-and-Yellow Garden SpiderBlack-and-Yellow Garden Spider – Nikon D70, handheld, f5.6, 1/60, ISO 200, Nikkor 70-300mm VR at 300mm, natural light

The Black-and-Yellow Garden Spider (Argiope aurantia) has a lot of common names that include yellow garden spider, zipper spider, corn spider or writing spider which shows the importance of having scientific names for ID because common names can differ in different locations. I like the striking yellow and black designs on the abdomen of this spider and I don’t think it is scary.

Western Spotted OrbweaverWestern Spotted Orbweaver – Nikon D300, f6.3, 1/200, ISO 640, -1.7 EV, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4x TC at 400mm, natural light

During a few week period of time on Antelope Island State Park spiders are everywhere. In the hundreds. In the thousands. In the millions! And that isn’t an exaggeration at all.

Western Spotted Orbweavers (Neoscona oaxacensis) weave their webs and lurk within them, waiting for their unsuspecting prey. During the peak of spider season on the island you might think it is spooky because in every Sagebrush, Rabbitbrush or Greasewood these spiders could be hiding to leap out…

And ignore you.

Happy Halloween!



  1. [email protected] November 9, 2013 at 8:57 pm

    I love spider season! And these shots. The first shot is mesmerizing in an optical illusion sense.

  2. Hummingbirdlover October 31, 2013 at 9:43 pm

    Great photo’s ! Wished I could have printed them and put them all over my outfit I wore to bingo? hee hee I was a witch.

  3. Sonja Ross October 31, 2013 at 6:36 pm

    You do have some attractive spiders, and some great shots of them.

  4. Jane Chesebrough October 31, 2013 at 6:15 pm

    Well, if one of them jumped at me I would let out a squeal! I sure admire their beauty and their handiwork, nonetheless.

  5. eric c11 October 31, 2013 at 1:13 pm

    very nice web on 1st shot, and it s fun to see the second specie very close to the European species but with a coloration a bit different (a sample of the “argiope frelon ” -french name – )
    thanks mia, and happy holoween to you =)))

  6. Elephant's Child October 31, 2013 at 12:50 pm

    Fascinating critters. And, as usual, stunning photography.]

  7. Utahbooklover October 31, 2013 at 12:28 pm

    Thanks for these great images Mia. I like spiders when they are outside but partner hates them all. Jumping spiders are my favorite — I enjoy watching them.

  8. Bob Bushell October 31, 2013 at 9:21 am

    Number 2 is the best, but they all look really good.

  9. Dick Harlow October 31, 2013 at 7:04 am

    Excellent shots Mia. Your DOF is fantastic! I especially like the catch of the web of the Orchid Spider! Beautiful job. Saw my first one several years ago, tried to catch the web and spider from underneath. The shot was only fair, not enough light. Many thanks for sharing!

  10. John Randall October 31, 2013 at 7:01 am

    Happy Halloween Mia !

  11. Montanagirl October 31, 2013 at 6:41 am

    Excellent shots of the spiders. That first photo is outstanding. Happy Halloween!

  12. judy watson October 31, 2013 at 6:08 am

    Wow!! Mia! Awesome spider shots!

Comments are closed.