oh What a zigzag Web has Weaved

On Sunday I went botanizing in the Plant an Old Growth Forest lands with two naturalists. Well. I’m more than a bit rusty so they did most of the botanizing and I held the clipboard and wrote down their discoveries. We started in a wet sedge meadow and found quite a few species and were able to add several species to our list for this natural area.
During our walk I came across an interesting web and its spider. The web was roughly circular but what made it distinct was a thicker zigzag silk in the middle. It looked like a landing pad or a zipper. I was unable to snap a picture of the web or the yellowish brown spider in it so I’m not exactly sure what species it is.
I was, though, able to find that this type of web decoration has a name: stabilimentum. Scientists aren’t sure what purpose these serve but it likely depends on which spider you’re looking at as several species have stumbled on this ‘idea’ over time. If I had to guess the species I saw I’d say it was Argiope aurantia or something very close to it.
The article in Wikipedia suggests that this may have been the inspiration for E.B. White’s Charlotte’s Web which is one of my favourite books. So if the stabilimentum I saw in the sedge meadow I saw was a message I’d have to say that it lead to www or the worldwide web to Wow myself With Web decorations so I would blog about it. How recursive you were you Wonderous Whimsical Web.

Writing by Spider


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