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Name: Zachary
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Question:
Identify Spider with web by garage. Clarendon Hills, IL

Size: Body almost size of a quarter. Legs 3/4", maybe an inch long with light and dark brown stripes or black and brown stripes. Body is brown. On the underside abdomen there is a short black vertical line with two or three short horizontal lines passing through the top of the vertical line, kind of like a "T" with two or three cross lines. It is not afraid when we look at it at night, even if we shine a flashlight close on it. It just keeps weaving its web. If it is not dangerous we'll leave it alone or take it away from the garage. Someone said it was a brown recluse, but I don't think so from the pictures I've seen on the internet. If it is we'll have to kill it. I couldn't find any good web site for "Illinois Spiders", so I thought you could help.



Replies:
Definitely not a brown recluse, it is much too big, and recluses do not build obvious open webs. It is probably some sort of Aranae, or orb weaver - does the web look a little like a wheel with spokes? I don't have my spider books handy but you have done a good job describing it and when I get the chance I'll give the books a look.

J. Elliott



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