A Hunting We Did Go, A Hunting We Did Go…

Thatsaright! We did indeed! This very morning, spider hunting that is. We went on a spider walk at the botanical gardens and what it boiled down to- was looking for silk! We lifted rocks (and put them back very carefully so as not to disturb anything underneath them) and peered at the grass and into trees and strolled through the garden with a sweep net.
We found LOTS of spiders, and the woman who took us on the little hunt slash stroll has been studying arachnids for more than 30 years. She and her husband have written a couple of books on the subject too. Damien was in his element of course. He even found what I think was a leopard gecko! We saw a beautiful wolf spider with all her tiny spiderlings on her back, a velvet spider, two other little wolf spiders carrying their egg sacs, a few comb footed spiders (which actually regurgitate food for their hatchlings but are not natives of South Africa) a spitting spider, a baboon spider, a beautiful copper coloured male sand diver (that eats only termites) and Damien- with a considerable amount of effort- caught an exquisite big black and white male jumping spider.
My Daddy Darling went with us, and am I glad we took hats- it was hot as blazes!
We really had fun though, and learned a few new things too. The “flatty” for example- can actually drop a leg or two when they’re spooked- like a starfish- and if they live long enough they can grow those legs back again the next few times they shed! Sadly, we also learned that several spiders are in trouble, the baboon and hedgehog spiders in particular- which are endemic to Gauteng- are endangered because of the rapid growth of both housing and business in the province.

Here’s damien’s jumping spider- about halfway through their “fight”…

…can you see the gecko?

this is a “flatty”

a new plant

a velvet spider

mois with the sweep net

damien checking the net

damien “hunting”

the “guide” displaying the possiblr size of a baboon spider

the garden

4 thoughts on “A Hunting We Did Go, A Hunting We Did Go…

  1. gail: i haven’t seen “wah wah” yet but i’d like to- its based on an actors life story innit?

    nmotb: the spider walk was a jol!

    tammy: spiders weren’t always my thing either- but the more i learn about them the more interesting they are!

  2. Hi there my friend! sounds like you had a fun day on the spider walks *shivers down my spine*. Thanks for the birthday “shoutout” you are the best!

  3. Rather you than me Angel!!! We get large ” huntsmen ” in our houses and it’s panic stations for me.

    My South African girl friend who is from Jo’burg was around last night. Now that’s not unusual. She’s around about 3 times a week and we are rather partial to a glass or two of bubbles. We hired a DVD called Wah Wah. It was really enjoyable.Its just done the rounds of the movie theatres. Have you seen it??It’s set in Swaziland in the late 60’s and shows British society there. They are more British than the British. (So says my English husband ). Anyway my friend really enjoyed it even if it did make her a tad homesick.

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