Celaenia excavata L. Koch, 1867 Bird Dropping Spider

This spider resembles a bird dropping, a protective camouflage during the day. It is one of the larger bird-dropping spiders with the females growing to around 15 mm body length, widespread in Australia but more common in eastern states. The much smaller male spider, about 2.5 mm, is seldom seen. Females are dirty white, grey and black-brown in colour, with a very large abdomen compared to the cephalothorax. They have become common in orchards. At night this spider seems to release odours that mimic those of a female moth ready to mate, thus attracting male moths. The spider's appearance also mimics that of the female moth. The egg sacs, more often noticed than the spiders, are spherical and almost as large as the spider, laid in cluster of 6 to 8 and each containing about 200 eggs.


Celaenia excavata
Photo: Katarina Christenson

View My Stats