I've looked everywhere, but have not found the answer to this. A
very large orb weaving spider decided to take up residence above the
front door of my house (which is in a very residential neighbourhood,
about 7 miles from Boston MA), and there he or she has faithfully
stayed since about August. I left it alone because (a) it builds
beautiful and intricate webs, and (b) it eats fruit flies and other
assorted insects. Every day it sleeps in a corner, and then it comes
out and either builds a new web (weather permitting) or checks out
the landscape and then goes back to sleep. I realise the common
wisdom is these insects lack intelligence, but this one seems able
to judge how to construct a web to allow for a strong wind, and on
rainy nights, it doesn't venture out at all. But I digress.
While I don't like spiders, I sort of got accustomed to this one.
Now, winter is coming, and I can't find any information about what
will happen to it. I never thought much about orb weavers till this
one came along, so please tell me-- when the really cold weather
comes, will it die? Will it hibernate? Should I try to relocate
it? I have no idea what the future holds for this species, and since
I have never seen it mate (it studiously ignores other spiders), I
assume it's not going to leave behind any spiderlings, but will it
survive a cold winter? I appreciate any information you can offer.
Most spiders lay eggs and die before winter. A few, but I don't know of any
orb weavers, hibernate (but I'm not a spider expert!). Relocating it would
not be any help.
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Update: June 2012