Is this spider poisonous? It’s web reaches from a local branch on a tree to a shrub in my yard.
This is Gasteracantha cancriformis, a Spiny-backed Orbweaver. She isn’t dangerous. She has the spikes to make her less pleasant for a predator to swallow. Almost all spiders have venom (there are vegetarian spiders!) for killing prey swiftly. Only a very few kinds of spiders in USA have medically significant venom – the Recluses and the Widows. Everything else can be considered safe. Any spider or insect bite should be washed and disinfected to reduce the risk of bacterial infection under the skin. Don’t worry about this one,they only bite in self-defense and it is rare. Thanks for asking!