The Find-a-Spider Guide

The Find-a-Spider Guide    The Find-a-Spider Guide    The Find-a-Spider Guide    The Find-a-Spider Guide
Find a spider by...     common name     location       species       family       webs and egg sacs     photos

Argiope protensa

Fact Box
Species:
Argiope protensa (RM)
Family:
Araneidae
formerly Argiopidae
Body length:
female: 11-15 mm
male: probably about 4 mm
Habitat:
This spider builds a small and rather fragile circular web which is strung within stalks of tall grass or between leaves or branches of small shrubs. Like other Argiope species it builds a stabilimentum into its web but this is usually not the complete X shape and may sometimes be entirely absent.
Toxicity:
Not aggressive towards humans so probably harmless
Argiope protensa
Click to enlarge
Egg sacs
Click to enlarge
Another female
Click to enlarge
Underside of female
Click to enlarge
Female rear view
Click to enlarge
Another female
Click to enlarge
Unusual markings
Click to enlarge
A juvenile
Click to enlarge
Other specimens

The colouring and markings of this species are quite different from those of the more common species, Argiope keyserlingi. The long, pointed abdomen is distinctive on many specimens but some individuals (perhaps especially immature ones) have a rounded rather that a pointed and slightly upturned abdominal ending. Until recently, the blunt-tailed specimens were thought to be a separate species which was named Argiope extensa but this is now considered to be just one of the shapes adopted by Argiope protensa. It is noteworthy that the egg sac for what was known as A. extensa is identical to that of A. protensa and resembles a small cup with a lid suspended in a meshwork of silken threads.

Spider(s) with a very similar appearance:None.


Email Ron Atkinson for more information.    Last updated 13 January, 2016.