Spider season

Spider with preyI saw this spider with its prey near the back porch.  It was fascinating to watch how it wrapped the bug it had caught in its web – spinning it around to wrap it up, then resting for a bit.  I successfully photographed some really nice close-ups of the spider.  Here is one of them:

Spider with preyNow, I must admit that I felt a visceral response when I started working with these photos and magnifying them to check on the quality of the focus.  There definitely is something primal and fearful about a spider and how it catches, stores and eats its food.  So I will spare you the most intense of these photos.

I do want to share the fascinating beauty of this spider’s colorful legs.

Spider's legsAnd how it is holding to its web as it suspends itself and its prey in mid-air.

SpiderReally . . . how does it do that? I could only see that it had two legs in contact with the spun lines.  And it is hanging upside down (in my world).

Later, I saw the completed meal package isolated in the web.  Apparently, the meal was for another time.  The spider repaired its damaged web and then hung out underneath the soffit.

Spider under soffitThe way it is clinging to the holes in this vinyl reminds me of the spider inside the windchime tube. Several days after catching and storing its prey, I snapped another photo of the spider in the middle of its web.

Spider with preyIt’s now eating a meal.  When I zoomed in closer on the computer monitor I noticed it looks like the same meal that I photographed being wrapped up four days ago.  Is that possible?

Parts of this spider look repulsive to me and yet it has its own beauty (those striped colorful legs) and its own beneficial purpose (eating other bugs I may not want to have around).

Once again, I could not find exactly what type of spider this is since I only have a limited book for identifying these creatures.  Does anyone know what this spider is called?

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