Young Garden Spiders

What are those bundles of tiny yellow spiders with a black spot?

Towards high summer and the beginning of autumn, small, cherry-sized clumps of tiny spiders can be found on webs in the garden and, if disturbed, these erupt into a cascading mass of tiny yellow spiders with a black spot on the rear end. These are quite harmless baby Garden Spiders.

In late summer or early autumn many spiders mature mate and produce eggs. The common Garden Spider (Araneus diadematus) lays from three to eight hundred yellow eggs that she cements together and covers in a dense layer of coarse protective yellow silk and detritus. When spring comes the following year, bundles of tiny yellow spiderlings with a black spot on their rear end can be found. If disturbed, the bundle of babies will 'explode', with individual spiderlings dispersing away from each other on tiny silken safety lines. Once the danger has passed they climb back up the web and form a clump again. Before emerging from their egg sac, the spiderlings moulted once. Once emerged, they remain together until they have moulted yet again and grown big enough to be independent.

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