This month's featured creature is the Spinybacked orbweaver (Gasteracantha cancriformis), also known locally as the crab spider. This species is the only one of its genus that occurs in the New World and it is found from the southern U.S. to northern Argentina. Other members of the genus occur in tropical portions of the Old World.
Females are 5-9 mm in length and 10-13 mm wide (about 3/8”). Only the females have the red abdominal “spines”, with males having four or five small posterior humps. Males are also only about 1/3 the size of the females, and are slightly longer than wide.
The First Friday Creature Feature is a monthly event on this blog, held on the first Friday of every month. Check back next month to see what new creature is lurking in my garden!