20 December 2006

An aweful site

This was a site that would have remained unseen, seeing as it was exposed when a fallen half of a eucalypt was sawn for firewood, and the cracked wood fell apart.

Said to live under loose bark, the inhabitants lived in a crack. When a piece of bark was placed on the now exposed split, life carried on. I don't know if the mother opened her eggsack (as is written), but her babies certainly emerged healthy,
though startled every time the piece of bark was removed for a peek (most of the time, they and their mother were on the underside of the bark, not the surface of the split wood).

These are the spiderlings of the huntsman, Delena cancerides. Their mother lived with them for weeks after they emerged, and it is written that she carries them on her back when she hunts (though I didn't see this).

The Australian Museum tells something about them, and so does Dr. Linda S. Raynor, Cornell University, who says, "The primary research in my laboratory is on the social behavior, mother-offspring dynamics, colony formation, and sexual conflict in the endemic Australian huntsman spider, Delena cancerides (Sparassidae). Delena were the spider stars of the 'Arachnophobia'!"

Phobias! Spiders, ringtones, heights, depths, oysters, tails, the outdoors, the unknown, the undiscovered.

The site was active for three weeks, and now is just firewood.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Care to still burn them? 0.o please?