The basilica orb weaver spider (Mecynogea lemniscata) is remarkable – its body length measures only half an inch. It sports a brown hue, except for the top of its abdomen, which boasts striking white wavy lines with thin red bands within them and black and yellow markings decorating the middle.
Basilica Orb Weaver: Named for its treacherous web.
The Basilica orb weaver gets its name because of its dome-shaped web part. The whole web maybe 20 inches across. Its spiderlings weave perfect orb webs. As they mature, spiderlings spin more specialized webs like adults. Like many orb-weaving spiders, it removes its web at the start of each day (It seems to me like a lot of effort to have to spin a new web each night!).
The basilica orb weaver spider takes a unique approach to clean her web. She wraps the old one tightly around her egg mass every time she lays eggs, and it looks like strings of beads or tubes with “beads” consisting of egg masses.
Orb weaver spiders possess eight minuscule eyes but have inadequate sight. So instead of relying on their vision, they use the vibrations from their web to sense and locate prey caught in its sticky strands.
Further recommended reading about spiders.
Spider pages: Learn how to identify and avoid these spiders.