Today we went on a spider hunt in our yard. Bayli was totally fascinated by the whole event. We found a large messy web in our rock wall and stalked the owner. Jed poked at the edge of the web with a stick to tempt our rock dweller. Seconds later, holy cow, there was a huge Black Widow Spider that slowly crept out. It crept to the edge of the web to investigate. Then we thought, get a bug. Jed hurried off to find some bait for our creepy neighbor. I swear that he is the fastest grasshopper catcher. He carefully placed the tiny morsel on the web, about eight times. We were getting frustrated. That spider had the most ineffective web. The gaps were much too big and the grasshopper would easily get away. Finally we were able to get it secured. But, alas, she (the spider) was too weary of us now and wouldn't come out for a feast. We searched for some other rock inhabitants and found two other homes that looked as though someone were home. Again with the bait, repeated by gasps of disappointment when the bait would easily get away. We did have one inhabitant (some little brown spider) that came and checked out the bait but quickly went back to its shelter, knocking off the bug with its motion. We tried one last time with the little brown spider. This time, SUCCESS! Bayli was so excited to see the spider catch its prey. We are totally morping our child-but it is so cool!!! It wasn't as dramatic and exciting as it would have been at the Widows dwelling though-what a disappointment. I wanted my baby girl to be able to see a really big spider in action.
Later, we went on another spider hunt. This time Jed was armed with spray rather than scrumptious meals. It was a bitter sweet event. I love spiders, I am not bothered by most. But, we seem to have a Black Widow infestation and we don't want our little ones to get hurt. Especially since Bayli has discovered a new found love for climbing all over the rock walls.
I figured that we would find 2 0r 3 nests. Was I ever wrong. We know that we had at least 3 nests in the rocks (we actually saw those inhabitants), not to mention there were so many suspicious looking webs that we didn't actually see the spiders that had been occupying them. Everything got sprayed. We hit a gold mine when we lifted the lid to our sump pipe. There were about ten occupying that space-SHIVER!
This was the largest spider that we found, that is a quarter. She must have been getting ready to make her nest of eggs, because she was F-A-T, fat!
We found some other fun spiders, we didn't spray them though. We loved this one that was perfectly camouflaged to look like the stucco on our home. Overall, a fun time for the three of us. And a learning experience for Bayli.