Every year in August Antelope Island has a SpiderFest where there are walks and talks about the spiders of that live on the island, I love photographing them and they really aren’t so creepy as they seem to be. This year the SpiderFest is on August 4th and I’m sure everyone who visits will have a great time and learn more about these eight-legged inhabitants of the island.
Western Spotted Orbweaver resting in her web – Nikon D500, f8, 1/320, ISO 500, -0.7 EV, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light
Birds are my passion and I photograph them more than anything else but I do love to aim my lens at the spiders that start to drape the island with their webs around July. The females are larger and thus are easily seen hanging around in their webs catching brine flies, moths, butterflies or whatever flies into their silken traps. They caught my eye on my first trip from Florida to visit Utah before I even moved here.
The spiders I see most often are the Western Spotted Orbweavers, the spots they are named for can be seen in this photo on the spider’s abdomen.
Female Western Spotted Orbweaver and friend – Nikon D500, f8, 1/640, ISO 500, -0.7 EV, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light
With my long lens I don’t have to get close to the spiders to photograph them but nice photos of these spiders can be taken with shorter lenses on DSLRs, point and shoot cameras or even cell phones. It’s not like they are going to fly off like my primary subjects, birds. I don’t even have to tell people where to find the spiders because they are virtually everywhere, even along the causeway before reaching the island.
I wish everyone could visit the island at least once while the spiders are as highly visible as they are now.
Life is good.