Last month I caught several adult wolf spiders and was taking care of them and studying them. In the meantime, two of the spiders had produced egg cases and carried them around with them for several weeks, even constructing little web-nests where the mother and egg case would sit, motionless, protected from the world. Sadly, the mother spiders died, leaving their egg cases behind for me to take care of. Normally, the mother spider will open up the egg case and let the spiderlings out when they are ready to hatch; unfortunately I didn't know when that was, so after three weeks I opened them with tweezers (very carefully! don't want to hurt anybody) and the baby spiders jumped out! Wolf spiders are unique among spiders in that they provide parental care: the spiderlings will jump on the mother's back and ride on top of her for a week.... if one falls off, the mother will wait until it jumps back on again. I suppose I'm the mother now, but I'm not going to let them ride around on MY back! Anyway, I'm going to hold onto them for a while until they get a little bigger and then release them into the wild.
Aren't they cute?????? I love baby pictures :-)
This was taken with my Kodak v1253 camera, holding the camera up to the objective of a microscope (yeah, it's low-tech.)
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