Slugyard is back! Unfortunately I lost a little over a year’s worth of posts when I moved the site to my new host. So it’s time to start catching up…
Above is a photo taken of the side of one of my raised beds. See the spider?
These small dark spiders are common around my yard. I find them usually sitting in the sun along this planter or a wall of my house, always next to a patch of grass or weeds. When I approach, they quickly run away and disappear into nooks, crannies, and grass.
Here’s a closeup. The photo is a little fuzzy, but you can just make out one of its eyes sitting on top of its head. Note the beautiful shades of brown and red on its abdomen (the back section). Also visible are a few spiky hairs on its legs, especially the leg at the bottom left. Speaking of legs, notice anything missing? How many legs do spiders have?
More than 5! In this photo 2 stumps are visible. There must be a third as well. I’m not sure where the legs went- were they bitten off by a predator? By another spider? These creatures seem to live together in large groups so I wouldn’t be surprised if another spider bit them off.
I am not 100% sure what kind of spider this is, but I believe it is likely a Thin-Legged Wolf Spider. According to the National Audubon Society Field Guide to Insects and Spiders, these spiders don’t build webs or make a shelter. Instead they like to sun themselves and wait for prey to come too close. I am definitely glad that they are living on my garden bed- hopefully they’ll keep other insects away from my pea plants!