Or, if you want to be fancy, the Jorō Spider.
That’s Trichonephila clavata for those of you who are more scientifically inclined.
- Originally from East Asia
- They can grow as big as your hand. Unless you are Shaq.
- As many as 1,500 eggs can be counted in one egg sack.
- Their web might be nine feet across.
If you live in northeast Georgia, you’ve seen them in your yard. Likewise, if you live in Taiwan, Japan, Korea, and China — they are common there. I predict they’ll take over the American South much like kudzu has. Harmful or helpful? We don’t know yet. Stay tuned.
Who Are You
I’m guessing initial visitors will be from Georgia (where I am). However, since the weather and general environment here is similar to Alabama, Mississippi, North Carolina, and South Carolina, I expect a few residents from those states to be dropping in soon. Let us know where you’re from in our Facebook group.
They mostly eat insects, but their webs are strong. A small bat or hummingbird can be caught. Young tree frogs and lizards too.
This beautiful, delicate beast…
this powerful, yet light creature…
this ever-present though mysterious being…
Savage? If you are a beetle, yes.
Fearsome? Absolutely… if you are a grasshopper.
Terrible? If you are the fly which will not be going home tonight, quite.
To the human noticing them on your patio, they are awesome, as in awe-inspiring.
This is a place to get started and hopefully lead you into the wonderful, entrancing world of the Joro Spider.
We prefer to consider them stunning. Sure, walking into an unexpected spider web is alarming, but the Joro Spider means no ill-will to humans.
There’s a Japanese myth, something like the Greek Siren, in which the spider becomes a beautiful woman to entice men. Then, she eats them. OK, that’s creepy.
A Few Joro for You
These are just a few of the Joro Spiders we’ve seen around the yard.
“When spider webs unite, they can tie up a lion.”
“Normal is an illusion. What is normal for the spider is chaos for the fly.”
“The difference between utility and utility plus beauty is the difference between telephone wires and the spider web.”
Edwin Way Teale