Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Enemy Number 1 steals a web

The Number 1 Enemy of my spiders doesn't only eat them - birds know that silk is the perfect material for binding and lining a nest. It is flexible, strong, will bind the other nest material and will not rot - in fact water will run off. So it is no surprise that the many visitors to the back verandah steal silk.

This morning, an Eastern Spinebill, my favourite bird, landed on the verandah rail. I have planted salvias all around the garden just to draw this bird into the house. They hover over the flowers much like hummingbirds in other countries. But they are bigger, about the body size of a sparrow. Then I noticed that she was looking back and forth surveying the webs along the eaves.

She made her choice, took off ...

... and removed an entire web, belonging to one of the black house spiders (Badumna insignis).

Tonight I went out to see how the deprived arachnid was coping. There was fresh silk. She was starting again.

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