Apparently, Three Is Not a Crowd

three dictyna mesh web weaver spiders in webbing with midge and longlegged fly prey

A group of mesh web weaver spiders sits among the remains of their prey (a long-legged fly and two midges).

You know, what you don’t see very often? Spider threesomes. So you’re welcome. But seriously, what an odd, little morbidly placid spectacle I chanced upon. The two yellow-legged, variably-colored spiders at the left are the females, while the all red spider with his large pedipalps is a male. Many people think of female spiders devouring their male partners after mating, but the male was not in any jeopardy while I hung around. The females did not seem to have an adversarial relationship either; in fact there was not much activity (though some movement around the webbing and prey) during my time shooting them. I have seen what I think was multiple spiders of the same species feeding on a fly at the same time, though only one was an adult, the others much smaller juveniles. So maybe the smaller female here is an older kid home from spider college? If anybody knows what is going on here, I’d love to hear about it!


3 thoughts on “Apparently, Three Is Not a Crowd

    1. The three spiders was a new one for me. I have seen these spiders in a pair before, as well as at least one other kind I can think of off the top of my head. Definitely seems unusual in my experience.

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