Thursday, March 30, 2017

Spider gang members

As the weather improves, after this wet, wet, winter, (at least now, some days, it doesn't rain. Much.) I'm beginning to see spiders again. Around home, they're mostly still the specks that hang webs from the ceiling and drop mini-frass under the window sills. But in the drier areas along the shores, I see the occasional one scuttling under a log or racing across the sand.

Something I've never seen before is a mob of spiders; most spiders are loners. Spiderlings, yes; they hang around together for a short while after they hatch, and then disband quickly before their brothers and sisters eat them.

But last week, I came across a small heap of dead grasses and sticks, with bits of bark and broken branches, not more than a couple of feet across, on a rocky shore. And it was covered in adult spiders, too many to count; they dashed for cover when my shadow beat me to them.

Two spiders, running.

I approached from the far side, with my shadow behind me, and waited. After a bit, one spider ventured out, looked me over, then hid again.

A wolf spider, maybe. The wood grain gives some idea of the scale. A mid-sized spider.

I looked carefully, both live, and later in my photos. There was no sign of webs, at least on the surface of the pile. The shore around this pile was mostly bare rocks. I saw no more spiders anywhere in the vicinity.

Spider hangout, at the tip of the red arrow.

When (if) it stops raining again on a weekend, I'll hike down the Ripple Rock trail again and look for more of these.

And I'll post these photos to INaturalist; maybe I'll get an id. (Update: It's a wolf spider, according to the eyes, they say on BugGuide.)

No comments:

Post a Comment

If your comment is on a post older than a week, it will be held for moderation. Sorry about that, but spammers seem to love old posts!

Also, I have word verification on, because I found out that not only do I get spam without it, but it gets passed on to anyone commenting in that thread. Not cool!