Friday, September 12, 2008

Good Hunting!

Our patio isn't exactly a Kiplingesque Mowgli's haunt, but boy do you get to see some fascinating creature-features!

It wasn't raining today so the little MoonBug and I were outside. She was crawling around as usual while I just sat on a foam mat on the floor, listening to the breeze. It was so quiet and lovely. Just then I spotted a most wonderfully intricate spider web, stretching between the hibiscus bush and the mesh netting around the gazebo. As I studied it, I became increasingly fascinated by the way the spider, who was lurking in the center of it all, had anchored it to various points on the plant, the netting, even to the floor. The architecture was perfect!

There were lots of little bugs buzzing around, and I just had to wait and watch. Sure enough, one bug snagged in the web. I was on my feet in an instant. In that ONE second, the spider had not only leapt onto the trapped bug, but also wrapped it in it's web-making discharge. I absolutely could not believe the speed of it all. I must have stopped breathing for sure. The little bug was motionless. No doubt paralyzed, I thought. Would the spider now eat its prey? It was back in the center of the web, having left the bug all coccooned up a few inches away. Was it being saved for later? I was still astounded by how quickly the little guy operated, when the impossible happened. The bug moved. Then a leg peeped out of the coccoon, and then another. As I watched, agape, the bug WRIGGLED OUT AND DROPPED TO THE GROUND. It fled in an instant. The spider stayed where it was, motionless.

I think by then my jaw had reached the floor. This entire drama unfolded in maybe 90 seconds. Unbelievable. I wish I had the camera handy to take pictures of the web at least (it's gone now - we had another heavy shower) but the pictures in my mind are probably indelible now.

All this in a tiny corner of the little patio.

Long live wildlife!


Umar said...

That description was amazing! I was guessing the end would be that the spider finally moves in for some snack, but how nature works. Really wish you had your camera :) but am sure you would've missed the moment by the time you fetched it.

An ordinary day for nature maybe, but definitely no ordinary day for the keen observers! :)

Oh, and yeah, I can see you are much more active now! Waiting for the next ones :)

Love your descriptions!

Glad to hear the little one is doing good!


Azra Momin said...

Salams and salutations, Umaaiirr!

Thank you for the nice comment. I don't think I actually did justice to that incredible piece of drama, but glad you liked it!