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.)