Monday, 16 May 2011

The Spiderling Nut

Two times now I am confronted by the Spiderling Phenomenon. This is new for me to witness.

First time I find a small garden spider at the centre of a perfect web in the sun lounge. I mean, there, dangling in the space we habitually walk through. Then next day, there are numerous tiny pinhead spiders spreading out around Her. Little beads on threads, like a galactic model.

Second time, outside, I lift and clumsily drop the cold frame lid. And, what I had taken to be a ball of mud or a dried leaf, breaks up and disperses into pinhead particles in front of my eyes. It is another Spiderling Group.

This one is made up of the same kind of baby spiders as the one inside the house. Tiny beads of gold and brown. To my surprise, after a while, this group reforms into a ball, a "nut". Or more exactly, it resembles a seed head. This spiderling seed head has stayed in place for several days. Every now and then it fragments; the spiderlings swarm away from the central "Nut", disturbed by some vibration or movement. Tiny sailors swarming the ropes of a sailing ship. But inevitably, I find them clustered together again, a gold brown Nut embedded in spider thread guy ropes, suspended between the ground and the eaves of the cold frame.

How long does this last, do you think?

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