Thursday, September 22, 2011

Cellar Spider vs. Silverfish

Or Pholcidae vs. Zygentoma, depending on how you want to look at it.

I spotted this when I was supposed to be making cornbread. The silverfish came out bucking with a very determined spider clinging to its back. The battle in the open didn't last long as the silverfish was very quickly paralyzed. It took the spider a lot longer to pull it up into a temporary web behind the soap dish, though. I think that was partly because I kept changing the light trying to take pictures, so the spider was being cautious about retreating and running forward.

Eventually, however, both were tucked safely behind the dish and under the counter ledge, where I trust the spider got to enjoy a leisurely meal before someone moved the dish.

The cornbread? Yeah, I got it made. Turned out well, too.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Neoscona oaxacensis in Huntington Beach Central Park

Yay! It's the spider time of year again! The park is just full of the big ones now. Today was fairly cloudy, so they were hanging out in plain sight well into the day. At least, I'm assuming that the light level had something to do with it. The Neoscona don't, on the whole, seem to be a particularly shy bunch.

As usual, I owe thanks to the awesome people at bugguide for the identification of the spider as a Neoscona oaxacensis aka the Western Spotted Orb Weaver. It's an utterly harmless sort, related to all the crucifera hanging out in my yard last year (This year, too, I think, though I have to take a closer look at the one by the gate some time when I'm not trying to figure out how to get out without breaking the web (I did end up breaking it yesterday, I confess. I may just have to move him/her if she doesn't start weaving a bit higher up)).

Anyway, back to the oaxacensis.  It is a much showier beastie than  the Neoscona crucifera. The crucifera are all pale golds and tans. This one if flaunting its colors. Just look at all those spots! And the orange and yellow stripes on the legs.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Spider and Sliverfish

For some reason someone cleared this away shortly after I saw it.

I suppose it is kind of odd to let spiders lair behind the kitchen faucet.

But look at her. Isn't she a wonder? I think she may be one of the tiny ones I spotted earlier this year, too. Born and bred at hom!