Hentz's orbweaver

WASPHentzsOrbweaver1-JB.JPG WASPHentzsOrbweaver2-JB.JPG Hentz's orbweaver (Neoscona crucifer) [dorsal view] [ventral view]
Photos © Illinois Department of Natural Resources

 Features and Behaviors

Also known as the arboreal orbweaver, the females of this species range from about one-third to slightly over three-fourths inch total body length. The males may be about two-tenths to about six-tenths inch total body length. There are many forms in this species so identification may be difficult. Most individuals are some shade of orange or brown, but some of them have no markings, while others have very distinct markings. Many individuals of this species have a light mark down the center of the abdomen with additional marks oriented toward the sides. These marks may take the shape of a cross. The legs have alternating light and dark bands. The ventral side of the abdomen is black with two white spots.

Adults are active from late summer through fall. This species builds a new web each evening. The web may be up to two feet in diameter. An egg sac may contain as many as 1,000 eggs. It is enclosed in yellow threads inside a rolled leaf. This species is active at night.

 Illinois Range