Bronze Orange Bug

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I wanted to reply to your article on Page 3 of the Feb Mar 2002 edition ref. Bronze Orange Bugs. As I mentioned, my husband, Frank, has many tropical fruit trees as well as natives growing and finally solved the problem of bugs damaging fruit trees, especially citrus. Whenever he finds a “Golden Orb” spider, he carefully removes it with a small branch and re-locates it (branch and all) to the affected tree and in a short time, the spiders eat all the bugs and the new growth grows normally and the tree flourishes. Hope this is a help to other growers.   Ref: Rhonda Wruck

Nephila species build large webs of yellow silk high up in trees or powerlines. An open section of the incomplete web acts as a rubbish dump where the spider discards exoskeletons (hollow shells of insect prey) in a string. Males are about a quarter of the female (up to 45mm in body length and are found on the web perimeter in the mating season. Adult females are grey-brown to grey-purple with an oval or elongated abdomen. The legs are very long and are usually banded with black and yellow or brown, often with large tufts of hair on all legs except the third pair. Nephila webs are very strong – South Sea islanders use the silk for fishing nets and bags) and catch a variety of prey from large to small. The tiny insects caught are usually consumed by the dew-drop spider Argyrodes antipodiana which also lives in these large webs.  Ref:  Field Guide to Spiders by Jan Green