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Posts Tagged ‘crab spider’

As I was looking at a small patch of purple aster flowers yesterday at Jackson Miles Abbott Wetland Refuge, I noticed that the center of one of them was a different color than all of the rest. I moved closer and was thrilled to see this very cool-looking White-banded Crab Spider (Misumenoides formosipes) nestled in among the petals of the flower. This kind of spider does not build a web, but patiently perches, waiting to pursue passing prey.

crab spider

crab spider

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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As I was loading camera gear into my car on Monday at Occoquan Bay National Wildlife Refuge, I noticed that I had a tiny hitchhiker—a crab spider that looked ready to embrace me with open arms. After photographing the cute little spider, I released it into a grassy area, where it seemed more likely to catch something to eat than on the roof of the car.

I do not have much experience with crab spiders, but think this one might be a Goldenrod Crab Spider (Misumena vatia). As always, I would welcome a correction or confirmation if you are knowledgeable about spiders.

crab spider

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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One of my fellow photographers pointed out this cool little crab spider on some Queen Anne’s Lace (Daucus carota) during a photo jaunt to Meadowlark Botanical Gardens in nearby Vienna, Virginia this past Saturday.

In this first shot, my favorite, the spider seemed to be expressing frustration that his prey had escaped his grasp (or simply wanted to show me his awesome biceps pose). Who knew that spiders have biceps?

crab spider

Initially I tried to photograph the spider looking down at it, but I had trouble maintaining a steady pose and my shots were blurry. I decided to kneel down and get at eye level with the spider, looking across the plane of the flower, and that seemed to work a bit better. These shots look like they were done with flash, but the EXIF data shows a shutter speed of 1/320, which is higher than the synch speed of my flash, so these were actually done with natural light, with some exposure compensation dialed in.

The second shot, which preceded the first one in time, shows the spider trying to capture a small insect (I think).

crab2_blog

The little insect starts to run away.

crab3_web

In vain, the spider crawled after the small insect, but it was too late. When I left the spider, it was at the edge of the flower, looking off into the distance, pondering perhaps what might have been, thinking about the one that got away.

crab4_blog

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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Sometimes an insect or a spider is so small that it seems almost impossible to get a clear shot of it, which was the case the this morning with this tiny crab spider.It was located in a place where a tripod was not feasible and the spider kept changing its position.

I kept shooting and got this image that is kind of artsy. The spider ended up as merely one element of the composition. I especially like the limited color palette and the different shades of green and brown that are present in the image.

crab_blog

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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