Posts Tagged ‘crab spider’

A week ago I did a retrospective posting on some of my favorite photos from the first half of 2019 and alerted readers that a second posting would appear “in the next few days.” Here at last is part two—click here if you missed the first installment. As was the case in the initial posting, I went through my postings month by month and selected two photos for each month. I have provided a link to the individual postings in the captions of the photos to make it easier for interested readers to see the images in the context of the original postings, which often include additional photos and explanatory information.

If you look carefully at the dates, you may notice that I did not include any photos from November in this posting. As many of you may recall, I was in Paris for three weeks in November. After my first posting, one reader suggested that I do a separate posting for Paris, rather than be forced to select two photos from the many that I posted of my adventures in Paris. I decided to follow that recommendation, so hopefully there will be  a third and final posting of my look back at 2019 sometime “soon.”


Sable Clubtail

Sable Clubtail dragonfly, July 6, 2019 Sable Clubtail

Halloween Pennant

Halloween Pennant dragonfly July 31, 2019 Perching Halloween Pennant


Osprey, August 3, 2019, No sushi for me

Eastern Ringtail

Eastern Ringtail dragonfly, August 5, 2019 Getting down with an Eastern Ringtail


crab spider

Crab spider, September 7, 2019, White-banded Crab Spider

Handsome Meadow Katydid

Handsome Meadow Katydid September 10, 2019 My favorite insect?


Blue-faced Meadowhawk

Blue-faced Meadowhawk dragonfly, October 2, 2019 Blue-faced Meadowhawk in October

Bald Eagle

Bald Eagle October 16, 2019 Bald Eagle Takeoff

Hooded Merganser duck December 7, 2019 Hoodie Season

Pied-billed Grebe

Pied-billed Grebe December 24, 2019 Portrait of a Pied-billed Grebe


© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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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).


The little insect starts to run away.


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.


© 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.


© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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