Spider Alert!

Warning: This post may contain Spiders!

Hmmm… What’s this?

Nursery Web SpiderThe great Β thing about Spider’s webs is that they are quite easy to find and when you do find one there is very often a Spider near by. You just have to make like a near dead Fly.

This is the home of a Nursery Web Spider…. and here she is, Pisaura mirabilis.

Nursery Web Spider

Nursery Web Spider

Nursery Web Spider

Nursery Web Spider

Nursery Web Spider

Pisaura mirabilis is the only species of Nursery Web Spider that we have in the UK so identification isn’t difficult. This one will be a female because I have found her guarding her web. These female spiders carry their eggs around with Β them in a big sack that they carry under their body. When the eggs are close to hatching she will deposit them in the web and stand guard over them, which is where we are now.

I found a couple of these webs a few weeks ago but I couldn’t find an adult spider. Those webs were full of spiderlings, maybe they had eaten their mother.

Nursery Web Spider

Nursery Web Spider

Nursery Web SpiderSpiders are very into the idea of eating each other so it should come as no surprise to learn that mating often results in the male getting eaten.

He has a way of avoiding being ate and it is known as”thanatosis.”

Thanatosis comes from a Greek word which means “Putting to death” and it is used to describe the act of playing dead. Grass Snakes do it and so do possums and so does our Spider.

When a male wants to mate with a female he brings her a gift, “Eat this instead of me,” during mating he keeps one hand on the gift because he doesn’t want to lose it and if she turns nasty he pretends to be dead until she calms down again. Love is a dangerous game.

This particular Spider seemed to want to eat me or at least my camera, she kept running up grass stems and waving her legs in my lens, unfortunately she was getting so close that those shots were all out of focus.

Nursery Web Spider

Nursery Web Spider

Nursery Web Spider

Nursery Web Spider

Nursery Web SpiderShe is so cute πŸ™‚

Nursery Web SpiderThat is our Nursery Web Spider and I shall be keeping an eye on this web for spiderlings.

While I was out here I went to check on our Labyrinth Spider, no babies yet.

Labyrinth Spider

Advertisements

28 thoughts on “Spider Alert!”

  1. Thanks for the warning, I was mentally prepared ! And yet… I ended up really scared. I can’t help myself. I find the web fascinating, but as soon as the owner is close… I have to close my eyes. Quick, let’s go back to the butterflies, I have to clear my mind !!! πŸ™‚

    Like

    1. Thanks Gin πŸ™‚ You really wouldn’t have liked this one it was very willing to defend it’s nest. It is a bit too windy and overcast for Butterflies, instead I am trying to show the birds in the garden how to use chopsticks πŸ™‚

      Like

    1. Ha Ha πŸ™‚ You know that is probably the most sensible thing to do. Here in the UK we don’t have any poisonous Spiders so we talk about fear of Spiders as being irrational. If I wasn’t in the UK I wouldn’t go anywhere near a Spider that I didn’t know well, especially a big one πŸ™‚

      Like

  2. I’m still laughing from “lady-dibles”, very funny! A great post though, I think spiders are always worth a closer look and you’ve done your model proud here , really nice shots! πŸ™‚

    Like

    1. Yes, I absolutely get that. I was aware when I was taking the pictures that I was causing stress to the animal and I did it as quickly as I could. She would actually have got up onto my hand for some pictures without hesitation and that would have been quite cool but I didn’t want to push her that far. She was a very fierce little beastie although Fizz and I could have probably taken her, we decided not to. I am going to photograph her again. These lttle things are important to me.

      Like

  3. I’m going to believe that the spiderlings didn’t eat their mother. That’s just too much of a sacrifice for anyone to make. Talk about bratty kids. I can understand her eating her mate, however. I don’t have a problem with that. After all, they are consenting adult spiders. If he’s bringing gifts, because he’s sure she’ll try to kill him afterward, you know his wee spider brain is a bit off. Instinct can be a bitch, that’s for sure.

    Like

  4. Eeewwww! Spiders!
    Oh well, you did warn us. And I tried, I really did, to see them through your eyes. But in the end it still was, Eeeeeeeew! Spiders!
    Old prejudices die not at all.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s