1. 1.
    traveling from place to place, especially working or based in various places for relatively short periods.
    "the peripatetic nature of military life"
    synonyms:nomadic, itinerant, traveling, wandering, roving, roaming, migrant,migratory, unsettled
    "I could never get used to her peripatetic lifestyle"
  2. 2.
  1. 1.
    a person who travels from place to place.
  2. 2.
    an Aristotelian philosopher.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Screening the Aliens Among Us

I'm Nobody! Who are you?
Are you--Nobody--Too?
Then there's a pair of us?
Don't tell! they'd advertise--you know!
How dreary--to be--Somebody!
How public--like a Frog--
To tell one's name--the livelong June--
To an admiring Bog!

--a poem by Emily Dickinson, c. 1861--

My daughter snapped the first picture you see yesterday evening right as the sun was setting. The mantis sitting outside the pool enclosure looks like he is saying his evening prayers. I went outside this morning to drink my coffee and meditate on things just as the sun was rising and found this toothy smile above me inside the pool screen. I had been wondering what sort of creature had been leaving its webs dangling down for me to get caught in. It looks deceptively friendly. If I was much smaller or it was much larger, it would probably love to have me come up for dinner sometime. I would at least like to be properly introduced and know its name. Does anyone know?


  1. It's a spider wearing a Michael Meyers halloween mask! Yikes!

    Frances at Fairegarden

  2. Hi, Frances! Wouldn't that kind only come out at night? This one looked like it was actually sunning itself. If it's trying to take over and scare everyone away, it appears to be succeeding. I've been avoiding the pool all day, and I'm afraid to see how big it will be tomorrow.

  3. I don't know what that is..but I love the mantis photo, please tell your daughter for me...

  4. Hi! Thanks for your comment on my blog, and words of encouragement! I appreciate it!

    This spider is really creepy and hard-shelled looking! Sort of like he could take over the world within a few days! LOL :)

  5. At first i thought it was a spaceship from outer space..I didn't realize it was a spider! ; D
    We don't have mantis here in Sweden, thy do look funy!

  6. W2W: That is a great spider with the fun face on the belly. I doubt if it would attack you.

  7. Pretty neat looking with all those spikes. Definitely a spider though.

  8. Michelle, I was hoping you would know. I'll keep checking different spider ID sites. My daughter thanks you!

    Hi, Julie. You are welcome. You're right about her appearance. It's almost like she has some kind of impenetrable armor.

    Glad to see you here, RAS. The spider does have that other-worldly look about it. Maybe it's an advance guard come to check out the variety of food sources on this planet. You say that you don't have mantis there. Are there many types of spiders or other predatory arachnids/insects?

    Hi, FG. It is certainly the most unusual and expressive looking spider I have ever seen, even if its "face" is on its abdomen. Who knew that a belly could be so much fun? I don't feel like laughing when I see mine.

    Hello, Tina. I wonder if those spikes are some kind of weapon like a throwing star. Maybe she spins around really fast like a table saw and.... No! It's too early in the day for that kind of image, and this is supposed to be a G-rated blog. Her web, by the way, is missing this morning, and she is nowhere to be seen!

  9. I've never seen such a unique spider as that. Have you positively identified it as a spider?

    There's so many interesting things lurking about in the garden and landscape that I have a difficult time deciding on what to photograph.

  10. TC, I don't see what it could be if not a spider. You can see its legs tucked up above it, and it was resting comfortably in the middle of its web. While I was on the phone yesterday afternoon, I looked out the window and saw it lower itself to wrap up some unfortunate bug trapped in its web. I then got busy and forgot about it. This morning, I went outside to see how big it was, and all evidence of it has mysteriously disappeared. I wonder if the mantis found its way inside the screen and feasted on it. Or do they eat spiders? I'm not sure.

  11. It'd sure be interesting to find out what kind of spider it was. Have you tried identifying it? You took a good photo, I'd think there'd be a bug Web site somewhere you could post it to.

    If you find out what kind it is, please let me know.

  12. Very unusual spider. I know I've never seen anything like it;) I can't see the web, it looks like it's levitating.

  13. I haven't seen a mantis for quite a while...that's a great photo and lovely Dickinson poem. As for the spider--it's definitely cute!!

    Thank you for visiting my blog. I finally got a picture of a similar-looking wasp at a site called Bug Guide.

  14. The mantis photo is very nice. They are one of my favorite bugs.
    The spider is wonderful. I do not know her name but she looks great.

  15. TC, (Eureka!) I think I have found it! On the site there is a similar photo that is identified as an orchard spider in the genus Leucauge (white cage?). Maybe Frances was right. The Halloween/hockey mask idea seems plausible.

    Marnie, spiders seem to have it all together, or at least the females do. They never have to cook or do the dishes; they are beautiful no matter how bad their hair looks; no one teases them about hanging out on the web all day.

    Kanak, thanks for stopping by. These insect and spider posts are a lot of fun for me. They seem to stimulate a lot of curiosity and interaction. I think most of us share a common dread but endless fascination for the creepy-crawlies.

    Q, thanks! You may find spidey's picture on my sidebar one of these days. It's too cute to leave it buried and forgotten in an "older post."

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  17. W2W: Thanks for letting me know that you have an Orchard Spider; now when will you plant the orchard? ;!)

    I also identified a spider I see regularly in my gardens - the big, bold, beautiful, black and yellow Argiope aurantia (one of its common names is Yellow Garden Spider, among others such as Black and Yellow Orb Weaver and Golden Orb Weaver).

  18. TC, I think maybe the spider is trying to hint that I need one! I might at least try a small vineyard when we get to move back here. After living in S. Illinois for a while and getting to sample what the recent explosion in viticulture has yielded, store-bought wine just doesn't do it for me anymore. I visited your site and saw your spider. Lovely capture, that.

  19. It's weeks from Halloween, Walk2Write, but the spider is already wearing his costume.
    Do you think it looks a little like the Spiny Orb Weaver in this post? They're seen in Florida.

    We had similar shaped spiders in different colors last summer - not so many this dry year.

    Annie at the Transplantable Rose

  20. Thank you, Annie. The site you linked to was very informative and interesting. The site I found described it as an orchard spider, I guess because it is frequently found in citrus groves. We are a little far north for citrus, but it's welcome here anyway. I'm for anything that catches pests in the garden.

  21. What a cool spider.

    Before I clicked on the pic to make it larger I thought it was a balloon or a blimp in the sky.

  22. Hi, MBT. Thanks for commenting. It would make a great balloon, especially for this time of year. I hope it has lots of babies in my garden. I want to see them all over the place--outside--next year.