Asian spider takes hold in Georgia, sends humans scurrying.

Asian Spider Takes Hold In Georgia, Sends Humans Scurrying.

Asian spider takes hold in Georgia, sends humans scurrying.
SUDHIN THANAWALA
Fri, October 29, 2021, 9:43 AM·5 min read

ATLANTA (AP) — A large spider native to East Asia has spun its thick, golden web on power lines, porches and vegetable patches all over north Georgia this year — a proliferation that has driven some unnerved homeowners indoors and prompted a flood of anxious social media posts.

In metro Atlanta, Jennifer Turpin — a self-described arachnophobe — stopped blowing leaves in her yard after inadvertently walking into a web created by the Joro spider. Stephen Carter has avoided a walking trail along the Chattahoochee River where he encountered Joro webs every dozen steps.

Farther east in Winterville, Georgia, Will Hudson’s front porch became unusable amid an abundance of Joro webs 10 feet (3 meters) deep. Hudson estimates he’s killed more than 300 of the spiders on his property.

“The webs are a real mess,” said Hudson, an entomologist at the University of Georgia. “Nobody wants to come out of the door in the morning, walk down the steps and get a face full of spider web.”

The Joro — Trichonephila clavata — is part of a group of spiders known as orb weavers for their highly organized, wheel-shaped webs. Common in Japan, China, Korea and Taiwan, Joro females have colorful yellow, blue and red markings on their bodies. They can measure three inches (8 cm) across when their legs are fully extended.

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