Friday, August 28, 2009

Picture a Day - Day 268

When we left our apartment next to a giant open field we really thought we'd left behind some of our old friends. The huge crickets who don't stop begging to get a little something on the side. The hordes of gnats and flies buzzing around because you dared to open the door.

There was even one time when my husband opened the door and a dragon fly zipped right into the place, just missing my head.

But the biggest insect group we thought we were leaving behind were the big spiders that hunted around the place. We generally gave them their own space, letting them attack and kill all the flies to their little hearts content. They didn't make a big mess of webs and kept the fly population to a nice minimum.

A little misty eyed to say goodbye to the walking fly traps, we packed up and headed for what we thought would be a more bug free zone.

Oh how wrong we were.

Already there was the wasp attack a month ago. I'm still a little edgy and have a habit of smashing a stack of moose on anything I see that even vaguely resembles a wasp (no really, we have a little garden moose that I broke killing a wasp. I'm not insane).

And now that we have an inquisitive puppy a new problem has sprung up. In the backyard hanging out on our decks are three orb weavers about the size of marbles. Over night these guys will build huge intricate webs to try and catch their prey, and also us as we stumble outside to encourage our little girl to go "piddle."

Last night, I thought I'd try to discourage them by breaking down all their webs. First there was one that stretched from our deck clear across the cement patio to the tree (A good 5 feet, easily). I picked up a stick and slowly broke all the threads on the deck, leaving the spider dangling from the tree branch as its spinnerets sucked all the broken web back in.

Then I moved to the second web, rather intricate and also quite large with the fat spider residing in the middle. Trusty stick in hand I batted away at the threads on the bottom and as I was winding up to attack the top, my husband began to climb the stairs.

I miscalculated a bit and caught the spider on the end of the stick, swinging it towards my husband. He hit the deck, literally, his feet slipping as he tried to duck to avoid the spider. Luckily Mr. Orb Weaver was still on the end of my stick.

We've had these guys building webs every night for a few weeks, and destroying their webs just doesn't discourage them from trying once again.

What do you do to get spiders to stop building webs in a certain area? Is there some sort of spider relocation project I could look into? Preferably something far away from a common, puppy could eat it area.


Chesney said...

I hate messing around w/ insecticides w/ my dogs around. I just call and get my house sprayed every spring & fall (what the professinals use is not harmful to pets.

Rachel said...

Unfortch there's really nothing that's been proven to work at relocating them.
What you might try, though, is turning off your porch light, and maybe putting up another light (even a temporary) somewhere off the porch. Lights tend to attract bugs, and therefore the spiders that stalk the bugs. You could turn on the light to let your little Miss out, but then turn it right back off again when you go inside.
But even then, that may not work 100%.

Linda said...

Those spiders are thinking 'Man, I just finished that. Gotta start over'. It'll get cold and they'll die/leave. Bugs aren't easily deterred from their tasks.