Joro Spider Population Explosion
PUBLISHED SEPTEMBER 30, 2020
Perhaps you have noticed the magnificently complex and dimensional webs hanging from your house or between tree limbs. Have you been driving when suddenly you see web after web spanning two power lines? If so, you are likely viewing the masterpieces of the Joro spider (Trichonephila clavata).
This exotic and majestic spider, that took up residence in northeast Georgia several years ago, seems to have ‘settled in’ nicely to its piedmont home. To many residents who hike, bike or garden in our area, however, ‘invasive’ would be the more apt term.
The Chicopee Woods has not been immune from this arachnid land rush. Hundreds of the animal’s gold-threaded, multi-layered webs drape the limbs of trees along the trails. Scores are visible festooning the buildings and other structures at Elachee Nature Science Center.
The 2020 Joro population explosion would appear to indicate that our local ecology has not yet adjusted to the new resident. Native spider-eating birds like Brown Thrashers and Mockingbirds may not yet recognize the large Joros as a food source. Perhaps the intimidating size of the spider’s web is also a deterrent.
Enjoy or hate them while you can. Fall’s first extended cold snap will eliminate the adults until the time spring’s first optimistic warmth will start the next generation’s life cycle once again.
View a Joro Spider Up Close
Plan a visit to Elachee Nature Science Center before the weather turns to see a stunning display of Joro spiders and their incredible webs. Even if spiders are not ‘your thing,’ it is worth a visit to gaze upon these natural marvels.