Sunday, May 18, 2008

Little Miss Muffet likes spiders!

Grandmas are made to be bossed around. Little Miss Muffet here wants me to find her a butterfly.

Done. Three cabbage whites.

"Bumblebee." Done. And a half-dozen wasps, which she calls "bumblebees".

"Snail." Done. Plenty of those.

"Where is spider?"

Zebra spider, Salticus scenicus.

Here he is! Isn't he pretty?

He was quite a jumper, and very curious. He kept turning towards me while I tried to maneuvre him into a good position for his portrait. When I brought the camera in close, watching him through the viewfinder, he disappeared all of a sudden. I thought to look at the camera itself; sure enough, he was on the extended lens.

Angled up to look at me. Those headlight eyes give these spiders excellent binocular vision (the better to jump at you, m'dear) and they can distinguish prey as far away as 30 cm. (1 ft.)

Back to work, Grandma! Snookums wants another snail!

I found her a pillbug, the kind that rolls up into a ball. When it unrolled, it frightened Miss Muffet away. Turns out spiders are ok, pillbugs are not.

Bonus, and this one wasn't scary at all: a nice, popsicle-green stink bug.

A dramatic head shot.

Then we went inside and drew pictures of butterflies, spiders, snails, and the pill bug.


  1. Great story. Since I like spiders, I loved that part.

    I don't know why I haven't run across you site before. Great site.

    I am adding you to my "Nature Blogs" blog roll.

    fantastic photos.

    We have been doing a Sunday series on our drive from Texas to Alaska and back. We really enjoyed our days in B.C.

    Thanks for sharing this fun story,
    Troy and Martha

  2. Thanks for the link!

    I'll check out your series. I've done a good part of that drive. (Never made it quite to the Alaska border.)


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