My son LOVES!! fishing and he’s constantly plotting a plan to convince me to take him to his favourite spots. He knows he can persuade me with the promise of a nature ramble, journal entries and opportunities for discovery. He may speculate, ‘I wonder what we would find today?’ Well, that’s enough pondering to satisfy my curiosity. Fishing we will go.
It was a beautiful day for fishing. A refreshing, cool breeze wafted passed while the sun drenched us with its warmth. Just as we settled into a day of restful fishing I felt something crawling on me. It was a spiderling and attached to it a long silk thread. I promptly brushed it off, of course.
It wasn’t long at all before the children were noticing more spiderlings raining on them too. As we gazed up we spotted hundreds of ballooning spiderlings. They were crawling all over the beach as well. I must admit, I was tempted to return home as it was a tad unpleasant, but I did stick it out for the whole day while my son worked hard at trying to catch a mulloway.
Spiderlings balloon or parachute when the competition for food becomes intense. They’re known to eat each other and to survive they relocate by crawling to their highest point and positioning their spinnerets towards the sky, they shoot out silk unto there’s enough to catch a breeze. Spiderlings have been known to travel up to 100kms this way.
We didn’t to go searching for something to study as the spiderlings kept us busy. Since our fishing jaunt I’ve relocated two massive banded huntsman spiders, and I’m convinced they hitched a ride home with us.
The expedition provided us with an opportunity to enter ballooning spiderlings into our nature journals. We also included a sketch of a spider’s life cycle.
It was interesting to learn of recent events where spiderlings rained from the sky to such an extent a carpet of web rested on the ground. Have you seen these reports?
Have you noticed ballooning spiderlings lately?
Does your family enjoy fishing?