Nursery web spider
When I first wrote this text, here’s what I said: “Okay, call me the boy who cried wolf: it’s been almost a century since the gray wolf, or lobo, roamed the Texas Hill Country. But wolf spiders in central Texas are another matter. Here’s a golden oldie of a picture—with the gold coming from a sunflower—that shows a large wolf spider I photographed in Pflugerville in 1999.” But I was indeed the boy who cried wolf, and I misidentified the spider. Thanks to a detailed comment by Spider Joe (which you can read below), I now know that this is not a wolf spider but a nursery web spider, probably Dolomedes vittatus.
I hadn’t seen this picture in years, but I’m surprised at how good a job the early digital camera, with its paltry 2.3 megapixels, did in recording the dark wolf spider and the bright sunflower.
© 2011 Steven Schwartzman