Friday, 3 October 2008

One of these might be nice. Update 5th Oct

The safari has not been able to leave the shelter of the bunker this week - that's the trouble with 'real' work. The conditions have been ideal for a couple of days to get out and look for Leach's Petrels but sadly the wind seems to have peaked now that the weekend approaches. Hopefully the wind will ease enough for these little chaps to get busy again (Arachnophobes look away now!) It has already dropped enough for a Sparrowhawk to be seen over Base Camp this afternoon, it's very rare to see these soaring along in foul weather.

This is a Garden Cross Spider. The reason I like them is they make their webs in advance of calm weather. A westerly wind is only any good when it's raging an absolute hooley, anything less than that is a bit duff.

These spiders are the ones that build the typical cobwebs of children's picture books all over the garden; for some reason they seem to like washing lines - maybe just to scare the living daylights out of laundry hanger-up-ers. The ones defending their chins with a pair of 'boxing gloves' are the males. The females have a decent set of fangs - good job they don't bite people!

Fine weather can mean cold clear nights. Then it is time to listen out for migrating Redwings, small thrushes from Iceland and Scandinavia. Stand outside quietly and listen for their thin 'seep' calls as they pass overhead in the darkness. As they arrive so do other species and the safari is waiting for news of the local Long Eared Owls - they can't be too far away.... this week.... next week.... who this space...

Where to next? What the weekend will bring?

In the meantime let us know what you have found in your outback.

PS. This morning (5th Oct) it happened - the first sunny morning since this blog and guess what - I was nice and clean fresh out of the shower and hanging out the laundry then walked straight through a web - poor old spider has to build another one now - sorry.


Michele Wassell said...

What an interesting blog... I enjoyed going through your post.

babooshka said...

W are still getting birds fly into the patio windows, and I am still bird whispering to bring them round.
The spider info is fasicnating. I will look closer at the next spiderweb I happen upon.

Monika Wieland said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog - it gave me a chance to find yours! I love finding sites like yours where people are documenting the interesting wildlife in their own personal "outback". I'll be adding a link from my site and checking back often!

Lancashire and Lakeland Outback Adventure Wildlife Safaris said...

Thanks for the comments everyone - glad you like the blog hopefully I will encourage others to have a close look at their 'native' wildlife and enjoy it. If any one is interested the easiest way to get good shots of cobwebs is to spray them with a houseplant mister then place a black card behind them and fire away, early morning or evening give the best lighting conditions...good luck...