Spider on blossom end of apple

2022 October 15

On September 18, 2022, Sam and I were going through some apples off of our trees. Sam noticed that the blossom end of one of the apples hand a thin, opaque sheet of silk over it, completely covering the dimple at the end of the apple. She peeled away the silk layer to see what was underneath. We were expecting something like a caterpillar, but instead we got a pretty decent spider. She showed no inclination to move or run away, so I got some pictures instead.

I couldn’t quite tell if she was guarding an egg case down there, but she may have been. We did get a reasonable view of the eyes and face.

In the next picture, I added arrows pointing out the eyes. There is a row of six across the front of the cephalothorax and two more further up on the forehead (the Posterior Median Eyes). The Posterior Median Eyes are also white instead of black, suggesting they have a reflective tapetum like wolf spider eyes do.

This particular eye arrangement, and the big, bulging chelicerae (the mouthparts) looks like a pair of spiders I posted back in 2015. These were most likely Leaf-Curling Sac Spiders in the genus Clubiona.

We figured that she probably had eggs in there, so we took the apple outside and put it in a reasonably protected place where she could re-cover the dimple in the apple to get through the winter. Of course, making a retreat on an apple isn’t necessarily a good plan. Things eat apples, ranging from squirrels and chipmunks, up to white-tailed deer and bears, and if that apple gets eaten the spider is going to get eaten with it.

One Response
  1. October 16, 2022

    I’d be concerned about the apple rotting even if it doesn’t get eaten.

    In any case, that’s a thoroughly creepy set of photos. Perfect for the Halloween season!

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