Sunday, December 12, 2010

Gasteracantha Cancriformis

Before we left Haines City I had to do some shopping for a few things. I left the kids with Marty and hit the ground running. While I was driving I went by a huge citrus grove, and let me tell you - this Alaskan girl couldn't drive any further without stopping to see this stuff up close and in person.

We're taught that citrus grows on trees, and we believe they're grown on trees - but you know, we've lived in Alaska for over 30 years... It's crazy to actually see it with my own eyes.

Florida oranges are really an awesome thing to see up close.

So I had to walk around just a bit, get a good look at all this. I was enjoying really taking it in, and as I was about to pass through two trees and go into another row I see a huge spider web that I was just about to walk INTO.


I should tell you right now that I really, really do. not. like. spiders. And that's just thinking about normal spiders!

THIS spider was definitely not a normal spider, and it was HUGE!

That green lime looking thing is the size of a full size orange. Just to give you some perspective.

Part of me had alarms going off inside telling me to FLEE, and the other part of me just could not move. I have never seen such a thing, and had I not stood there staring at it for so long I would have never believed such a spider existed.

Do you have the shivers yet? I do, all over again.

So I got home and googled "Crab Spider" because that's all I could think of to describe it, and sure enough - that's one of it's names. The official name is Gasteracantha Cancriformis.

Oh yea, I also want to tell you that on the way home I had to pull off the freeway really really fast because I thought I felt one crawling on me. I think it was just a hair, but at the time I was convinced it was a big spider. It felt like a big spider, crawling up the back of my leg. I'm sure I must have looked insane to the guy who had to swerve around me as I jerked off the road and all the others driving by as I searched my truck. My heart has never raced so fast. I was itching the whole way home.

Showers work really good for washing away the eebiejeebies

And now I want to show you what I saw up close and personal, so you won't think me a complete wuss...

The rest of these photo's are NOT MINE, but these people captured them much better than my little tourist camera did.

Crablike Spiny Orbweaver

Gasteracantha cancriformis - spiny backed orbweaver


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