Researchers found that rather than thriving in areas with lots of vegetation, golden orb weaver spiders were larger and had more babies in the city.
The study, published in the journal PLOS One, examined 222 spiders collected between April and June 2012.
It found: “Habitat modifications significantly alter species distributions and can result in increased abundance of select species which are able to exploit novel ecosystems.
“Spider size was negatively associated with vegetation cover at a landscape level, and positively associated with hard surfaces and anthropogenic disturbance on a local and microhabitat scale.
“The larger size and increased reproductive capacity of the spider in urban areas show that some species benefit from the habitat changes associated with urbanization.”
Golden orb weaver spiders are characterized by bright, vibrantly colored abdomens and produce webs up to one meter, which appear a golden color.
Females are often three or four times larger than males and, although they do have venom. they are usually harmless.
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