The Great Salt Lake Orb Weaver Phenomenon


A few weeks back, I visited the marina at the Great Salt Lake State Park. The Great Salt Lake is beautiful (albeit smelly) but something else significantly left me awestruck this time.

There is a large rock jetty at the marina, which is usually a wonderful place to watch the sunset from the marina. I was quite surprised to find this entire jetty, absolutely completely covered in spiders.

Thousands of them.

They are known as the Western Spotted Orb-weaver, and they thrive in the environment provided by the Great Salt Lake, mainly because of the prevalence of brine flies fed by the lake. I watched the entire time as the flies got caught in their web, and the orb weavers fed off of them.

The sheer amount of spiders within the jetty, which is approximately 200 feet long, is phenomenal. They are absolutely beautiful spiders close up, but as you approach them, they all scatter in each direction. As a spider enthusiast myself, even the sheer amount of orb weavers in one location all scattering at once made my skin crawl a little.

If you ever have the opportunity to visit the Great Salt Lake, I thoroughly advise you to do so. It is quite the experience, between the beautiful sunsets and the views of the mountains across the still waters. And, even if you aren't a fan of spiders, these Orb Weavers are absolutely beautiful and are a sight to behold with their huge webs, spun between the boulders of the jetty.

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