Zygiella x-notata is a species of spider that can be identified from the web it spins. Around an eighth of the web lacks spiral threads, possessing only one radial line. When spinning spirals, a spider of this kind will deliberately change direction each time it reaches the segment. This arrangement of silk reflects this spiders hunting strategy, giving them the common name: missing sector orb weaver. A spider will sit and wait in a retreat formed from webbing, built-in one of the top corners of the web. The lone radial thread acts as a fishing rod. Its actual term is a signal line, and with the tips of the legs slightly touching it, a spider can detect the slightest vibration. Following this, Z. x-notata dashes to its catch its prey before mummifying it with silk.
These spiders can be seen spinning webs in the upper corners of houses and in cupboards. Although unsightly, they can provide effective pest control in the home.
The carapace is a pale brown, whereas the abdomen is much larger, bulbous and oval in shape. It can be variable but generally possesses a large, grey folium. The hue of colours can differ between individuals. Female spiders are generally larger than males. A female orb web spider of this sort will grow as large as 7mm.
These spiders can provide pest removal services for the garden.
These spiders have been recorded in Europe and Asia. They have intercepted the USA and have become established in California.
Orb web spiders are a natural form of biocontrol in the garden. Encourage them to your green spaces by using bug friendly habitats, or by allowing some parts of the garden to grow wild!
It's not recommended to remove beneficial creatures from the garden.