Spiders are not Insects!

October 29, 2013 8:36 pm

Let’s just get that straight from the get go. Not that there is anything wrong with insects. All spiders, except the Black Widow and the Brown Recluse, are highly beneficial because they feed on troublesome insects like mosquitos, aphids and grasshoppers. Perceived discomfort spiders might cause (except the two exceptions mentioned!) is outweighed by the good they do. Just ask any farmer with a pecan or apple orchard.

My favorite spider is Argiope. As described by Malcolm Beck and Howard Garrett in the Texas Bug Book, “one of the gardens most beautiful beneficials.” Argiope is a pretty good sized spider and spins the most remarkable webs. They are known as garden spiders, zipper or zigzag spiders, or writing spiders because of their signature weaving.

If you have read E.B. Whites “Charlottes Web,” you might look more kindly on the orb weaver in your yard. I encourage you to visit Tucker Hill today to see many Charlottes happily controlling moths and grasshoppers to my delight.

Happy Halloween!

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