Monday, August 13, 2007

Everyday Entomology

Did you know there is a mama spider that hangs out and mothers her spiderlings?

We've been spending an awful lot of time this summer out in the yard and garden hanging out with the bugs. It's not something we've been doing on purpose, mind you. It's just that they catch our attention and we get sucked in.

In June we sighted this spider family in the vegetable garden. They moved right into the pepper plant and set up housekeeping, or more precisely, baby spider keeping. Just when I thought I understood the habits of spiders, this was more proof that nature will always keep me guessing.

The kids enjoyed watching this Nursery web spider and blowing on the babies in the nursery. Sunburst figured out that if you blow on them they scatter a bit. But they always returned to center, forming an amazing kind of spidery ball.

In other bug news, Einstein came back from a conference a few weeks ago and discovered that in his absence a chrysalis had attached to his bicycle tire. We stuck it in a jar and brought it inside.

And then we watched. And waited. And watched. And waited. And then completely forgot about it.


Suddenly there was a Monarch butterfly. Right there. In the middle of the breakfast table. We missed the emergence entirely, but spent a while with it-- cooing and oohing and ahhing, and watching it pump blood into its wings.

And then it was off...


  1. Anonymous3:27 AM

    Wow! All in your own backyard! So cool! We, too, have been having fun experiencing the nature around us this summer, but nothing as cool as what you've seen! Thanks for sharing! My daughter is jealous too just seeing your pictures!

  2. Whoa, this was a really cool post. The spiders and the butterfly ... all very fascinating.


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