Saturday, September 15, 2012

The Ned Relocation Program

This is Ned. S/he has been living in our front door for a few months now. The bottom left side of the screen door frame was not sealed and s/he found his/her way into it. With a web that swept in a triangle from the corner of the front porch out across a portion of our Welcome mat, s/he scrambled out of the frame and onto the web when s/he felt the door open, but then would scramble back into the frame when s/he realized (thankfully) that we are not food.

I would guess Ned is about 2.5 inches long, from leg to leg.

For months, we had no idea what was living there, only that there was a large web we were too lazy to sweep up. And since it was not a widow's web, we didn't care much. It was a couple of months before I caught a glimpse of him/her and I was immediately terrified and amazed. I have never seen a spider like this in my life. Usually just daddy-long-legs and widows. That's what I am familiar with. So I asked dear Google what s/he was. Consensus said that s/he was a Funnel Web Grass Spider, essentially harmless to people. So I let him/her stay. And then I named him/her Ned. Hubbs even fed Ned a moth.

As the weather got warmer and warmer, Ned became visible more and more often. The setting sun shines on our front door almost directly, and I can only imagine how hot the metal door frame must have gotten. When I came the other day, I noticed Ned was hanging out on the bottom of the screen door itself - on the inside of the door, between the screen and the front door. It has been so humid here lately that our front door has swollen so much it cannot be closed completely. I decided it was time to evict Ned. I like Ned, outside. If Ned were to get into the house I would not hesitate to scream and beg someone to step on Ned. And the guilt would set in. So that would not do. Ned had to move.

Not before snapping a few photos, of course.

I had hubbs sweep Ned into a mason jar, and we carried Ned to a bush on the opposite end of the front yard. He gently plunked Ned onto the bush and s/he jumped in. I hoped that Ned did not land on a lizard.

Dearest Ned, I hope you are happy in your new home, far away from my front door where I cannot say Hi to you every evening. I will not be sad if you don't visit. Just send a card now and then.