There are more spider-related links below, and My Spider Webs page is here. I also have a backyard spider page and third sundry spider page. Lastly, spiders gotta eat!
Click here for a 8 second time lapse of this spider working on her web
This gal (an Argiope) took up residence in the back yard in the summer of 2015. Nikon D810a, 200mm f4 lens, 1/640s, f5.6, ISO 3200! This page has some information about Argiopes. These spider are also called "Black and Yellow Garden Spiders" at least on this page.
This is some sort of "Writing Spider" from the backyard, 6/7/2015. Scroll down for a similar spider & more discussion. My backyard/Texas spider page has additional Argiope pictures. There's a time lapse video of this spider working on her web here. Nikon D750 & Nikkor 200mm f4 micro (macro) lens; handheld at f6.3, 1/1000s, ISO 1000.
AKA: Black-And-Yellow Argiope, Golden Orb Weaver, Yellow Argiope, Writing Spider, Golden Garden Spider
(Walt W. on the Olympus list suggested: Giganticus Bigassus Texspideroid)
Above: Here's an old film picture of a spider hanging around the B&B we stayed at in Wimberly, TX.
(Now back to the original story.) I named him "Boris," which my wife didn't understand as she wasn't really into The Who way back when ;-) Subsequently I found it really is a "Doris."
Someone asked "How big is that thing?" One of the links below suggests they get to be 1 and 1/8" across (whatever way across is), but I think this one may have been bigger than that. It was definitely a spider you could see easily, not like some spiders that are so small you can barely see them ...
Shot details: This was made possible by equipment sold to me by the members of the Olympus OM camera mailing list! Shot on my OM2s (thanks Tom!), Vivitar 90mm macro (thanks to another list member whose name I forget, sorry), handheld, Kodak RG 100 print film, ~f8 at about 1/250 plus or minus one fstop in either direction. I was bracketing around "sunny 16." Scanned on my Nikon Coolscan IV ED & cropped & processed in Photoshop 6.0 True Confessions: I did jazz up the color saturation a tad (who needs extra-color films when you have Photoshop?) It really was hand held, leaning against a bush, standing on tippy toes. Fortunately there was a lot of light which allowed a small fstop for good depth of field as well as a fast shutter speed. The direct sunlight in this shot nicely highlighted the funny web thing this spider does. You can't see this in the other shots not taken in direct sun.
More Info on Argiope spiders (from U. of Mich, go blue!) More Argiope pictures by others.
Argiope with Egg Sack
Photo by Paul Rieder, used by permission.
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after June, 2009 update. Updated 10/12/13, 3/13/14, and 8/22/14