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Homeward bound

Homeward bound
Photo Information
Copyright: Gerhard Theron (gerhardt) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1936 W: 244 N: 4106] (11620)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2005-05-01
Categories: Spiders
Camera: Canon EOS 300D, Canon EF 100-400mm F/4.5-5.6L IS USM, Digital ISO 200, Kenko Extension tube (12mm)
Exposure: f/5.6, 1/160 seconds
Details: Tripod: Yes (Fill) Flash: Yes
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
Date Submitted: 2005-05-02 11:41
Viewed: 6803
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 62
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Banded-legged golden orb-web spider
Nephila senegalensis annulata

Golden orb-web spiders belong to the family Tetragnathidae, subfamily Nephilinae. There are two genera: Nephila (Golden orb-web spiders) and the monophyletic genus Nephilengys (hermit spiders). There are three species in the genus Nephila: Nephila pilipes fenestrata (black-legged golden orb-web spider), Nephila senegalensis annulata (banded-legged golden orb-web spider) and Nephila inaurata madagascariensis (red-legged golden orb-web spider).

These large, obtrusive spiders are one of the few spiders which can be identified down
to species without the aid of a microscope and a fancy key. They are strictly web bound and find walking on the ground cumbersome. Nephila construct very large orb webs, often between trees or bushes from 1.5m to 6m above the ground. (I have posted a WS with the photo of the whole web.) Their silk is golden in colour and extremely strong. There are trip lines around the web and quite often prey remains are strung up to form a line through its centre. Their slightly angled webs are designed to catch large flying insects and small birds are occasionally snared, but rarely eaten. The female spider hangs inverted in the centre of the web, while one or more males lurk on the periphery of the web. Males are many times smaller than the females and can be distinguished by their swollen pedipalps which are similar to boxing gloves. It has the widest distribution throughout South Africa.

Reproduction is similar for all Nephila. As in the case of Nephila senegalensis annulata, the male (he can be seen just below the female in the photo) spins a small sperm web onto which he deposits a drop of sperm which he sucks up into his pedipalps. He will usually only approach the female when she is otherwise occupied i.e. feeding. He descends towards her and inserts his pedipalps, one by one, into her genital opening which is situated underneath her abdomen. Copulation may take as long as 15 hours and afterwards the now exhausted male retreats to a safe place away from the female. When ready to lay her eggs, she selects a suitable site and constructs an egg sac using special loopy white silk. After a fortnight or so, the young spiders hatch inside the eggsac. At this time they are still embryonic living off the yolk. Their mouthparts, venom glands, digestive tracts and spinning organs are underdeveloped, and only after the yolk has been absorbed and their body parts are properly developed do the spiderlings cannibalise each other and must disperse. Their life history follows a yearly cycle with the females living slightly longer than the males.

These large, shy but beautiful spiders may look formidable but are not aggressive, and even those who walk into their webs are unlikely to be bitten and although their bite is painful, it is not of great medical importance. Hope you like it.

Esox, sAner, dew77, elizemeijer, PDP, marhowie, Fisher, Runnerduck, ellis49, pompey, Lesley, tinman, Signal-Womb, LordPotty, milloup, AndyB, TAZ, liquidsunshine, Callie, extramundi has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To PDP: Other spider...gerhardt 2 05-02 17:38
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Critiques [Translate]

Hi vreemdeling.. goed om jou terug te sien :)

This is a beauty.. well done. Love the colours on it. the yellow spots and stripes. the details are great.

Mooi man, en welkom terug

Very good macro Gerhard.
Great sharpness, DOF, nice colours and well composed.
Your rings rocks.
Excellent work, my friend.

  • Great 
  • carper Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1973 W: 119 N: 2582] (8439)
  • [2005-05-02 12:10]

Wauw Gerhard you belong to the macro specialists, very well taken, good in pov and with a very good dof. Prachtig gemaakt man. Goed werk. Weet je Gerhard ik zie Willie niet meer?

gr. Jaap

  • Great 
  • Kris Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 174 W: 0 N: 129] (1818)
  • [2005-05-02 12:19]

Excellent macro, good shot.
Perfect sharpness, pretty composition.
I greet , Gerhard.

  • Great 
  • puciu Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 469 W: 0 N: 16] (2631)
  • [2005-05-02 12:25]

¦wietne zdjêcie , doskona³a kompozycja i ostro¶æ.

  • Great 
  • jossim Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1538 W: 5 N: 2240] (12636)
  • [2005-05-02 12:30]

De toute beauté, les couleurs et la netteté sont excellente.

Félicitations un très beau spécimen.

  • Great 
  • PDP Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor [C: 2821 W: 344 N: 3779] (11769)
  • [2005-05-02 13:32]
  • [+]

I love it! It's a fantastic shot Gerhard. I like th e compostion and the spider is great. Is that the tiny male beneath her? Or is it another spider, I know that there are a few species of spider that live in these large webs picking off the spoils.

Fantastic POV Gerhard! Excellent details, sharpness and colors..This perspective and dark BG gives the shot an overall creepy feel. I like it, Well done my friend!!

  • Great 
  • Fisher Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1540 W: 309 N: 2234] (8915)
  • [2005-05-02 13:59]

Well Gert, not only the female but is that the male at the bottom sneaking into view?
What a shot!!!
Excelent view and Composition with fine details. Ya-mon.


Fantastic detail Gerhard. Stunning composition and the background is great.
Love the bug in the web too. Well done and thanks for posting.

  • Great 
  • VeTTe Gold Star Critiquer [C: 162 W: 0 N: 0] (684)
  • [2005-05-02 14:24]

what a beautiful colors,sharpen and spider..
good shot

thanks for sharing..

  • Great 
  • naki Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor [C: 382 W: 27 N: 5] (40)
  • [2005-05-02 14:43]

Great macro Gerhard. Fantastic colors and excellent composition with just enough DoF.
Very good sharpness and clean background.
Very well done.

  • Great 
  • pompey Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 144 W: 4 N: 746] (2774)
  • [2005-05-02 15:41]

Great shot Gerhard, pin sharp, good colours and great details.
Thanks for sharing.

  • Great 
  • Lesley Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 297 W: 13 N: 913] (2988)
  • [2005-05-02 15:42]

Very cool spider and razor sharp image...this is a wonderful image, Gerhard! But then all of yours are a cut above.

  • Great 
  • tinman Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 242 W: 7 N: 458] (2663)
  • [2005-05-02 15:47]

Hi there - good one my friend. I like the POV as well. TFS. Tim
Have some good ones coming up for you!

Brilliant clarity, smoothness and detail... this shot is excellent.

  • Great 
  • Toni Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 403 W: 2 N: 316] (2034)
  • [2005-05-02 16:37]

Fantastic composition. The spider and web are so sharp and contrast really well with the background. Nice angle.
Well done.
Regards Toni

Stunning macro! Amazing details and great composition Gerhard. Always nice to get a different perspective in workshop, very well done.

A very interesting post Gerhart. Excellent photograph,really clear and well composed,showing clearly the golden silk.A great supporting note too,although possibly a little too detailed in parts ;)

I think I'd have cropped some more from the left side, but apart from that, the critter itself is excellently sharp and clear with good details and DOF.

  • Great 
  • AndyB Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1366 W: 32 N: 1351] (3982)
  • [2005-05-02 17:48]

hello Gerhard.
This is a great spider shot.
Excellent composition,colours and details.
Great DOF.
Very well captured,well done!

  • Great 
  • livios Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2150 W: 319 N: 4263] (16942)
  • [2005-05-02 23:59]

Gerhard, perfect sharpness and composition.

The bg works well too.

I see no problem in depicting the spider's natural environment in the workshop. I like it too.

You did a great job getting the male and female in the same shot. Thus the composition is great and the angle of the web provides additional interest.

  • Great 
  • dew77 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4432 W: 248 N: 4028] (13270)
  • [2005-05-03 3:29]

Amazing macro Gerhard!
Lighting,BG,Colors,details and composition are excellent.
Very well done!TFS...:-)

  • Great 
  • TAZ Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2241 W: 47 N: 3167] (10926)
  • [2005-05-03 3:47]

Belle et intéressante composition bien réalisée en macro pour cette superbe araignée. Jolies couleurs et bonne netteté.
Very Well Done !

  • Great 
  • sAner Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1455 W: 74 N: 1426] (4750)
  • [2005-05-03 4:46]

Hi Gerhard,

It's good to see you post again! :) This is a superb macro! Fantastic composition (1/3, 2/3, diagonal line) and razorsharp details. I love the DOF and POV. Great colors and a very informative note. TFS!


Great capture, perfect sharpness, great POV and very nice colours.
Very well done.

Great shot Gerhard,
This does look a mean spider. Really sharp details, fantastic colours and great composition.
Excellent capture, thanks for posting

  • Great 
  • Esox Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 239 W: 20 N: 344] (972)
  • [2005-05-03 14:38]

Perfect sharpness, warm colours, efficient DOF, as usual wonderful job ;-).
No more smiley today...

  • Great 
  • Callie Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1101 W: 95 N: 2610] (7555)
  • [2005-05-03 14:47]

Besige en lekker naweek gehad, sien ek. BAie beter as myne hierdie, net nie sulke oranje bene nie. Love this, and the pose is great - straight out of a hoor movie.
The SA Botanical Garden sells the DF book by WT. You can order via mail.
The Botanical garden behind me sells it too.

Your last posts are just impresing, Gerhard. Your level is higher and higher...Congratulations again.
This one has a great strenth, I love the composition. A very beautiful work.
Regards, Felipe.

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