Sunday, February 02, 2014

Hungry spider, playful lichen

A month ago, I was looking at a handful of tiny spiders on a mossy, licheny twig. Afterwards, I left the works outside on a potting shelf and forgot about it. This afternoon, curious as to what would still be living in the dry moss, I brought it in again.

Still alive, and loaded with sporophytes.

Zooming in on that heart-shaped* moss clump:

Almost ripe sporophytes, most still closed over the developing spores.

Here it is, last month, for comparison:


No orange capsules; just green moss leaves.

I found only one spider this time, and one springtail. The larger (but still tiny) spiders have moved on.

Spider hoping for fat springtail lunch. She wasn't fast enough, though.

The springtail, checking out my foam mat. I moved him back to the moss later on.

Interesting pattern of wood cells in the broken twig.

And my imagination often runs away with me; here's a happy green dog, playing some sort of net-ball game.

A tiny web, built by a tiny spider, holding a tiny drop of water.

*Makes a nice heart wreath for Clytie's Valentine post.


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2 comments:

Daniel Potter said...

Awesome photos. Great to see such wonderful things come from an inconspicuous mossy twig! Thanks for sharing!

Steve Daniels said...

Lovely pics Susannah. maybe it's the time of year but my blog this week also features lichen and spiders. http://cretenature.blogspot.co.uk/2014/02/a-kingdom-in-pine-woods_4.html