Friday, June 23, 2006
This fishing spider lives in my 750 gallon circular aquaculture tank behind the shed which houses my surfboard, fishing poles, dive gear and other assorted wetsport stuff. She is a kindred spirit as she is a diver and a fish catcher...don't know about the surfing part.
A moment after I took this shot, she was gone...as in, blink...where'd she go? It was one of the faster animal movements that I've never seen.
A closer inspection revealed her clinging to the side of the metal tank about 16 inches beneath the surface. She's an ambush predator and the school of gambusia minnows that live in the now dormant aquaculture tank are her targets. I don't know how long one of these fishing spiders can stay underwater, but it's pretty respectable. I know she outlasted me, as I tried to wait around for another shot, but she was too busy playing Sea Hunt to return to the surface.
I'm not sure how often she catches a minnow as they are randy little fish and are constantly reproducing. Still, she is big, and there's a recent molt hanging from the edge of the tank (not in photo) so she's growing which means she must be catching some of them.
Just another example of "if you build it, they will come". This tank now hosts water boatmen, water scorpions, this fishing spider, and dragonfly larvae. Those are all volunteers who flew, crawled, and crept to this artificial "pond".
I suppose my catfish will be hiking up from the real pond soon as it continues to shrink.