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This is a discussion on Giant Spider in Southern California within the The Jungle forums, part of the Land Plants category; Oh! You are so cruel!! Laughing at my brush with a painful death... sort of, ...
Oh! You are so cruel!! Laughing at my brush with a painful death... sort of, almost...
Well, looked at pictures of poisinous spiders, and although one of the pictures of a brown recluse on the web page McTease pointed out looks a lot like the spider I saw, I don't think "mine" was a brown recluse. It was a darker, more reddish brown. And the web page didn't mention anything about the black mark on the thorax. But that was a BIG spider to find suddenly crawling on your neck! One of the fellows at work suggested that it was some sort of Orb spider. Still - I don't want any in the house... I find a black widow almost every time I clean out space in the garage or move pots that have been sitting empty. Some of ones I've come across have had abdomens twice the size of a pea - an that's big for a BW! Knock wood that I have never been bitten as I do not wear gloves.
But I still think I'm gonna give the 'chids that I have to move back inside an extra thorough dousing of insecticide before brining them in!
With all this talk of spideys, I thought I'd show you who I ran into yesterday...
just a common garden spider, but still, at that size she called the shots!
Hmmm--you'd notice her if she crawled down your neck!
A brown recluse spider is a delicate brown spider with a darker brown fiddle shape on its cephalothorax. Most people have little or no reaction to its bite, only a very small percentage have any necrosis occur. Their leg span will fit on a quarter. They are not self-fertilizing, so even if the one spider you saw was a brown recluse it is bound to die alone. Also, they are not aggressive spiders, they will run rather than charge. I lived in NE Alabama with them for 23 years.
I must have been about 12 years old and my cousin, Perry, was staying with us over the summer. It was hot; I am guessing it was mid July because I remember the creek out behind the house was dry. That usually happened in the middle of the summer. We loved to play on the vines over the creek and did so as much as possible. I grew up in rural east Texas, so there was not much to do except play outside. Our other fun hobby was to ride on Perry’s three-wheeler. The problem was that it required gas and that required cash. My dad, being the businessman he is, would “hire” us to do chores for him. For our pay, he would unlock the big gas tank that we used for the farm truck and let us fill up the three-wheeler's tank. Well, one weekend my dad decided it was time to build a new corral and that my cousin and I would help by cleaning up around this old house we used as a corn shed. (I know this sounds a little crazy, but there was this really old house on the property that no one could actually live in any longer. So instead of building a corn barn, we would put the corn we raised to feed the cows into this old house. We put new tin on the roof, so it kept everything dry.) Anyway, Perry and I were to clean up around the corn barn because my dad wanted to build the new corral next to the barn. His idea was that it would make feeding the cows easier if we did not have to transport the corn so far. Anyway, while cleaning up around the house, we discovered a well. It had a bunch of old boards and wooden fence posts stacked over the opening and someone had thrown lots of old barbed wire into the mix too. It was a mess, so we loaded all of the wood and wire and some random metal junk onto the trailer that we would haul to the dump later. When we realized it was a well, we told my dad. He, of course, knew that it was there, but had long since forgotten about it.
The well itself was level with the ground and had a square opening over a round hole. Once we got the old boards and junk off of the top, we could see it was fairly deep. We dropped rocks into it and sure enough it had water in it. Since we did not have county water on the property, my folks decided to put a pump into the well to use the water and build a shed around it to keep the cows or other animals and people from falling into it. The opening was probably four feet across, maybe three. I was smaller back then.
Anyway, we put a bucket on a rope and started dipping the water out of the very deep and dark hole because it really had an awful smell. We wanted to clean it out and let new water re-fill it. Everything started out easy. We would lower the bucket down into the well and it would fill up with some water and we would pull it up and dump it. No problem. But soon, we realized that there was lots of junk down in the well too, old boards, etc. that had fallen into the well over the years. So after shining a light down in the well and looking around, my dad said it would be okay for Perry and me to go down into the well and tie up the junk so it could be lifted out bit by bit. SCARY! But we were young boys and nothing really scared us too much. So Perry ‘got’ to go down the well first. Dad tied a rope around Perry’s waist and lowered him down just above the water level. As he was going into the well, he noticed what looked like claw marks on the sides of the rock and my dad said that a dog or some kind of an animal might have fallen into the well at some point before it was covered. This kind of scared Perry a bit and I of course took full advantage of my position up on the surface to add to his fear by suggesting that the animal was probably still down there in the dark water. Hehehehehehe.. I then would drop small rocks and objects and say things like “I think I see something moving in the water.” The meanest thing was, I would spill some of the water back down into the well on him on purpose. I thought this was so funny until it was my turn to be lowered down into the well. I helped my dad pull Perry up, and on his way up, he noticed ‘something’ that we could not see looking down into the well under the square rock edge at the top.
After I was lowered down, Perry took his opportunity for payback. He took a small stick and ran it around the under edge of the square well covering. Under the edge were probably 100 or more daddy-longleg spiders. He knocked them down on top of me at the bottom of the well. They were all over me and since I was the dry item above the water, those that landed on the water were trying to get onto me too. I totally lost it. I smashed as many as I could but could not get out of that well fast enough. Perry and my dad had a good laugh! Talk about being creeped out. Oh, man that was creepy. I knew that those spiders could not really bite me. I played with that type of spider all the time. It was the fact that they were crawling all over me down in the well where I could not get away that was the worst part of the whole ordeal. Oh, and the smell. I remember how bad the water smelled, but smashed daddy-longlegs smell even worse. LOL.
What a great story. That was quite an adventure. Thanks for sharing it.
Last edited by desertgal; October 7th, 2006 at 03:27 PM.
What an awful thing to imagine! Shudder! First--being down in that well with the dirty water--for a claustrophobe like me. And then having all those daddy longlegs rain down on you. I couldn't handle that! Yikes.
We all grow up knowing that we have nothing to fear from daddy longlegs but there is something about them with those long legs that I have always hated. Once at girl scout camp--probably about 12 at the time--we were sleeping in a platform tent and had bunks with frames covered in mosquito netting around them. I woke up in the night, and got out my flashlight for some reason, and found that dozens of daddylonglegs had found their way to the inside of my net and were perched right over my head and in all the corners. I got out of there quick! And I think the whole camp heard it! Those were fun times, though.
LOL BD! Although, if it had been me, I would probably have just died of fright right then and there!! Of course, your dad would never have put a girl down the well... would he????