Monday, August 28, 2006

Spiders

Something totally different today - a drama played out in nature. I have been doing quite a bit of macro photography this summer and thought that I would share a series of spider photos.

While I am not afraid of insects, I know that some spider bites can be pretty bad, and, since I do not know the species of spiders, I was very careful when getting within an inch or two of the spider in the first photo. I estimate the length of it's body (not including the legs) to be about an inch (2.5 cm).

A larger insect was unfortunate enough to get caught in the spider's web and the spider immediately went to the insect and bit its neck. I am assuming that it was paralyzing the larger insect. Approximately 50 minutes later, I returned to the web to find the insect completely wrapped in a silk cocoon.

The fourth photo is actually a different spider "feeding" on an insect it had wrapped in a similar cocoon. (some animal or person had walked by and destroyed the web I had been photographing) If you look closely you can see at least 4 of the spider's eyes as well as a damp area on the cocoon where it is feeding.

I know many humans are afraid of insects, but they are part of nature and play an important role in keeping the delicate balance of life. It is so simple - spin a web, wait for an unsuspecting insect to fly into it, store the meal, eat when hungry, spin another web.



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