Photo: Signs of fall

Saturday, August 17, 2019

Rainbow web. Fall approaches. Richmond Beach, Washington
Photo by Frank Kleyn

Spiders and spider webs are a definite sign of fall - although they don't usually come in rainbow colors.

I had a largish black spider running down my wall last night - not the giant European house spiders - my cats murdered all of those long ago by bouncing them like basketballs.

I was annoyed with my spider because she's not supposed to be on my wall - she's supposed to be at the front door, keeping the porch light bugs away from the house.

For the first time in years, I don't have a porch light spider. There is usually one who moves in next to the door and feasts on all those little flying things that are attracted by the light. We usually have a few conversations about where the web can be located, then we settle in to a comfortable routine. I don't swipe down the web and she gets to eat all the bugs in peace.

My porch light is recessed flat into the soffit over the porch steps. One year the porch spider created a web like a fishing net. The edges were in a circle around the metal rim of the light and the web hung down about five inches in a sack.

It was astonishingly effective. Nothing flew by the light more than once.

We did have some tiny baby spiders - so small that they looked like specks of dust. So there's hope for a guardian for next year.

DKH

Correction: all the visible spiders in the fall are female. Happy to give them credit!

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