Monday, 16 September 2013

Do adult female house spiders roam?

As you gather from my last post, it is quite common to come across adult male house spiders, Tegenaria, roaming in search for females in late summer and autumn. Females are supposed to wait for them at the bottom of their web funnels. I was puzzled to find this fully grown, beautiful female inspecting my cat scratching post, in the open, an hour ago. Do females roam too?

4 comments:

JRandSue said...

Superb image.
John.

Yvonne Wilson said...

Superb pictures - especially these Tegenaria spiders! Further to the "Do Female House Spiders Roam?" topic, about a year ago a very young female Tegenaria Duellica made her home in the corner of our bathroom, chiefly behind the cistern. She has remained there all this time, happily accepting food items from us and growing - well, huge. A month or so ago she very suddenly left. We saw her go. Then, just as suddenly, she reappeared this afternoon. We watched her walk down the wall, inspect her web, clamber across it and then back behind the cistern as before. She leaves her toes sticking out, always. We are absolutely certain that she has not been in residence during that intervening period. Wasn't it a bit late in the year to go looking for love? It seems the most likely reason for her to have gone walkabout. It's so fascinating to study these amazing, complex little beings!

Africa Gómez said...

Thank you Yvonne and John, and super observations Yvonne. I wonder if a gravid female that is not visited by a male will start wandering to mate and then come back 'home'.

Yvonne Wilson said...

Thank you so much for responding, Africa - that's what we were wondering too. My fiance was certain he had seen her in the kitchen during the interim. She is spectacularly big, even for a giant house spider. We have befriended others in the past, one of them becoming so tame that she would take food from my fingers! Fingers crossed for some more spiderlings in the coming Spring....