Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Swims With Wolves, Orange Salmon, Blueberry Bonanza Bottoming Out

I found this girl and her babies floating in the water folly yesterday. She was one soggy spider.

She wasn't alone.

It looked like her final act of motherhood was going to be serving as a life raft for her babies.

Now, if you read this little website from time to time, you've probably picked up on the fact that while toothy and even venomous creatures aren't that scary to FC, ... gulp, spiders are.

They creep me out. Especially those dark fat ones with abdomens that dwarf their cephalothorax.

This is a wolf spider and I confess, of all the spiders, I like these best because they dispense with the creepy sticky web stuff and just run down their prey.

I can relate to that.

There are countless thousands of these wolf spiders in my lawn. They patrol the grounds each night wiping out pesky pests like those stupid flying Asian cockroaches. All it takes is the sweep of a flashlight at night to bring out the glowing eyes of wolf spiders in the lawn.

They don't seem to be very bitey, webby, or terrifically icky compared to other spiders.

I couldn't sit by and watch this one drown along with her babies ...

... so, I snapped off a sprig of purslane and fetched her out of the deadly waters.
Another rescue ... how do these animals survive when I'm at work?
I had to fish her (complete with babies) out again this morning!!!

Then there is Ceanne, the rescue fish, who thinks she is a salmon and it's time to swim upstream. The water folly has a three tier waterfall that cascades down into the main pond and last week, Ceanne had lept up into the first pool.

I assume she was heading to the top, but I fished her out and cut short her voyage of exploration.

Since then, she has been joined by two small koi, who are thrilled to be out of Petsmart and into a spacious pond of their own.

Speaking of Petsmart ... today at 5:00 pm, Bear and I will begin an 8-week dog obedience class. This should be good. I can't wait to see how he does, he seems so smart.
Ever thrifty, I will homeschool Gumbo (who is doing great!) with the knowledge gained during Bear's classes.
The logistics of two pups and the cost makes that plan the way to go.

I'll let you know how it went.

I don't know how many pounds of blueberries I've eaten this spring, but I should be one giant walking antioxidant molecule by now.
What a crop!

It's peaked, but the later producing varieties are still loaded and I'll be eating my own blueberries for a few weeks longer.

I'll be pretty blue when they're done.



Dani said...

Good save FC.

Miz S said...

I'm guessing that you don't walk barefoot on your lawn at night. Have fun at obedience class tonight. I hope we get some pictures.

Anonymous said...

NICE spidey! You're such a good rescusizer. Oh yeah, the think I poked with the bike pump on the dark ride home? Well it sure would have been nice had I been able to see it through foggy glasses before I poked it.
Um, well he's smaller than a zebra but evidently still black and white.

Susan said...

Hi, FC. I have several blueberry plants on my property... some wild and some cultivated. Do you know what to do about the "roll worms" that damage their new growth? I prefer a natural, organic solution if you know of anything.

Ceanne may be in danger of jumping onto a rock. I hope she knows what she's doing.

Emily said...

I don't really like wolf spiders either, but they eat roaches so I keep them around. Which PetSmart are you doing puppy classes at? We've got to take Tebow so he can learn what manners are.

SwampAngel65 said...

Aw, look at you rescuing the mama and babies! Way to go!! I'm slowly getting over my spider fear...we have so many where I work, along with plenty of black and brown widows - YIKES!

Those blueberries look deeelish! Wish they grew down here. One of the joys of living in the north, I guess!

Good luck with the training ;)

robin andrea said...

Nice spider rescue. What do the critters do when you're not around? Maybe you can teach Bear and Gumbo to do rescues, while they're learning other important things. They'll come barking to you, you'll say, "What's that, Bear? You say there's a spidey in the water folly? Let's go rescue!"

Anonymous said...

I would shine the light down the holes in the ground to see if any one was home. If her mate didn't move fast enough, he met his fate right after conception. A little snack for mama! Should of name the fish "Nemo".
Bro J

swamp4me said...

Bravo! Treebeard and I are proud of you. The spider is fortunate that you were strong enough to overcome your aversion to the eight-legged.

threecollie said...

Doggie obedience class!! It makes me miss having puppies around. Simply nothing like it. Have fun!

Delaney said...

Those are some amazing photos!stc

cinbad122 said...

YUMMMMMM!!! Blueberries! Will be out for awhile...Jamaica!

pablo said...

Seemed like we were going a long time without a groaner pun at the blog. I knew it couldn't last!

Anonymous said...

"You're turning violet, Violet!"

Deb said...

FC- I used this post as a lesson with Mr. Attitude; he came up to me while I was reading and was asking all kinds of questions about the spiders. So blogging really can be an educational thing.

Anonymous said...

FC perhaps the mother wolf spider was hunting the smaller koi and just got in over her head  as for the classes for obedience open mind ,even old dogs can learn new tricks  good luck study hard. Did you try to vacuum seal some blue berries .them freeze them. I did this with black raspberries there great on ice cream or pie?? S T E B

Floridacracker said...

Thanks. I can be brave when I have to be.

Miz S,
I do, but I walk real fast.

That story smells ...

No problem with them here, but the first organic remedy that comes to mind is BT or diatomaceous powders.

Archer road in G'ville. It went great!
Tebow is too funny ... maybe he's part beaver.

Well, we have berries but you guys have tropical fruits!
Grass is always greener ...

We're working on that right now. I just need them to quit eating the rescuees!

Too late, the Star Wars nerds have named them!

Thanks for the kudos. Apparently the new pond is a milliped/spider death trap.

It was a lot more fun than I expected! Bear did great.

Welcome and thanks!

Don't maka jamaica mistaka ... keep that boy guessing.

Why ... whatever do you mean?

I'll bite ... um, Willy Wonka?

Ack! I'm teaching even when I'm off!
Just kidding, that's the way I like PF to be used.

So far we are trying to enjoy them fresh since the store frozen ones are available all year and pretty good.

Leslie said...

LOVE the wolf spider photos, the babies are just amazing.

Floridacracker said...

That was a lucky break for the spiders and me!

Anonymous said...

All I can say is ......THANK YOU FC!!!!

Margaret said...

Wolf spiders scare me because they are BIG. (for WA anyway) I love blueberries; I spent many summers picking them. (and eating vast quantities of them) Ours don't usually start ripening until mid-July. The kind of weather we've been having might mean August or September!

elpbulls said...

That spidey pic was a little creepy even for me but also really neat such mixed emotions.....