It’s spider season. Whether those orb weavers and wolf spiders and grass spiders and all sorts of other spiders freak you out or fascinate you, it’s that time of year when you spot them everywhere. If you spend much time outdoors you’ve probably already walked into your share of webs and stopped to look at those large round webs strung across open spaces. Where did all these spiders come from?
Truth is they’ve been there all year, quietly going about their business of catching and devouring the juices from small insects and other spiders. Millions of midges and moths and flies have perished, thanks to the army of spiders that share our homes and yards with us. Most spiders around us that started as small ones in spring themselves became victims of other spiders, lizards, toads, large insects, and birds during the warm months, but those that survived have fattened up on their success until they have grown large enough to “suddenly” appear everywhere. Besides that, they’re also looking for love before they perish from age or nature.
In the pool the other evening I was bitten two or three times by midges, which bothered me far more than the two spiders I spotted at one end of the pool and one at the other, hanging on their slender webs and removing other midges from the world. I fished a couple of drowned spiders off the floor of the pool and rescued another by lifting it from the water on the back of my hand and setting it on the deck. Later I took a picture of a spider busily spinning a new web in a hackberry tree beside our table and stopped to chuckle at a wolf spider that has taken up residence in a vacated wren house on the kitchen windowsill.
If you can’t beat them, join them. There are more of them than there are of us. Without them we might get carried off in our sleep by flocks of mosquitoes!