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Some very beautiful small spiders are easily overlooked.  This is a sexually dimorphous species (see Bugguide's picture of Orchard Spider couple ) and shows a lot of patterns of wear and tear.  I'm making my guess about which sex is which on the assumption that females have the large abdomens (sometimes, when they're pregnant).  (Note: unless otherwise noted, all of the orchard spiders were about inch long). 

Orchard Spiders (Leucauge genus)

Orchard Spider, a coastal variety, Dare County, NC, 10/6/05.  Apparently with prey. Orchard Spider, Unknown species, Eno River SP, Durham County, NC, 4/28/06 Orchard Spider, Carolina Beach State Park, New Hanover County, NC, 9/17/07 Orchard Spider, Goose Creek State Park, Beaufort County, NC, 9/20/08

 

Durham, 6/9/05.  Note: this was a very small spider, about of an inch long including legs. Durham, 7/14/05, view 1. Durham, 7/14/05, view 2. Durham, 6/27/05.  This seems to be a pregnant female.

 

Durham, 6/21/05. Durham, 6/21/05, another view of spider on left. NC Botanical Garden, 7/2/05 Durham, 7/12/05.  This seems to be a member of the same species as the spider on the right. Two views of one orchard spider, Durham, 6/17/05.

 

Another NC Botanical Garden orchard spider, 7/2/05 Durham, 6/21/05 Duke Gardens, 7/24/05 Durham, 6/21/05.

 

Eno River SP, Old Cole Mill Road access, 6/23/05.  Eno River State Park, Old Cole Mill Road access, 7/6/05 Eno River State Park, Old Cole Mill Road access, 7/6/05, same as spider on left Two views of same spider, Durham, 7/20/05.

 

Durham, 6/11/05.  Durham, 6/11/05 (same spider)  Johnston Mill, Orange County, NC, 7/1/06

Immature?

Smaller orchard spider (about ⅓ inch long)

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