Banana spiders rule!

Banana Spider (Nephila clavipes)
Golden Orb Weaver (Nephila clavipes)                            Photo by Bette Kauffman

This time of year, walk with care. Keep your eyes open for the giant webs of the Golden Orb Weaver (Nephila clavipes), also commonly known as “banana spider.” Much as I appreciate their beauty and ecological role, I don’t want that web wrapped around my head!

This shot is from my recent walk at Black Bayou Lake National Wildlife Refuge near Monroe. The late-afternoon light was pretty good for showing the gold color of the web.

This spider was easily as big as my hand, and she is just one of many I saw along the Black Bayou boardwalk. Yes, “she.” This time of year, the much smaller, less colorful males are no longer seen lurking around the edges of the web.