Mr. Nature: Our Favorite Spider

How about a little belt of sanity? Some of God’s stuff.

This is a European garden spider, same genus as the ones in my back yard. They get pretty big, for spiders, and spin large, beautiful webs. It’s surprising, how quickly they deal with a fly or a mosquito that gets caught.

I have a soft spot for these spiders because once, years ago, one of them nested on my car and wound up going on vacation with us to the shore. She was there with a new web every night, catching bugs galore; and she didn’t like it if we had to use the car for sundry vacation activities. We took care, though, not to disturb her any more than we could help, and she was with us for almost the entire two weeks. I say “almost” because on our last Friday evening, as we drove back from a restaurant, a gust of wind came up and blew her away. We’d been looking forward to her coming home with us, but it was not to be.

From then on Patty and I have always tried to extend every courtesy to these spiders. And the more flies and mosquitoes they eat, the better.

12 comments on “Mr. Nature: Our Favorite Spider

  1. My wife is all for spiders as long as they reside outside. When one makes it into the house and the wife sees it, it is “David! Come kill this spider.” At the lake nearby there are spiders that make huge webs – I mean really huge!

  2. I’m not much of a spider hater, but Brown Recluse are the exception. I have a bite from one and they never completely heal.

    Tarantulas, OTOH, are amazing creatures and tend to be very shy.

    1. It was 17 years ago. The pit at the site of the bite may have finally closed, sometime within the last year. It was scary!

      I had a little bump under the skin of my arm, which I though was a cyst of some sort. One day, it appeared to be inflamed and I had the presence of mind to draw a border around the inflammation with an ink pen. Sure enough, it was getting bigger. I went to the ER on a Friday night and they gave me some horse pill antibiotics. The next Monday, I went to my primary care physician and he cut it open and removed the infectious material.

      For YEARS afterward it would inflame, especially if I had a minor cold and my immune system was on high alert. To this day, I avoid pressure to the site of the initial spider-bite. You just gotta love #$&*@@!! Arizona!

    2. I’m very glad those spiders don’t live in New Jersey–although I suppose they can always be accidentally imported.

      No, the spider I was writing about is the harmless garden spider–and they do eat an awful lot of flies and mosquitoes. I’ve seen ’em do it. Applause.

    3. They could easily be imported of the colleges started a program to ensure that they could never be imported. Arizona was essentially devoid of mosquitoes until the U of A accidentally released a whole bunch of them.

    4. The past several years have brought rumors of the brown recluse having moved northward, even as far as the northeast. I’ve always been fascinated by spiders and appreciate them greatly, but this one is surely an exception!

    5. Thank you for posting that, Linda. She seems happy in her work and obviously very skilled. You’d have to be denser than Joe Collidge to think that is accidental and not intelligent design.

  3. I’ve shared this little cutie before, but I just can’t help myself. If you just want 12 minutes of relaxing classical background music along with a video of the delicate precision and care taken by the harmless little spiny orb weaver in creating her masterpiece, you’ll greatly appreciate this video. Enjoy!

    1. Oh, thank you, Linda!
      I’m working against the calendar to get my current book written, so I’ll have to go outside again in a few more minutes. Your video will be welcome when I finally get some time to relax.

    2. You’re so welcome! You bring much to our days, Lee. I’m happy to have given a little back. Isn’t she glorious?! 🙂

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