Having only recently been home to a chipmunk, our ol' cookie container soon found itself habitat to a number of jorō spiders—eleven, to be precise. Benjamin went around snatching them out of their webs and filled this jar:
They're not very aggressive...toward humans...nor are they particularly venomous...for humans...but they were clearly uncomfortable being in such close quarters. It's not unusual to see multiple spiders in a tree, but each usually has its own web. We learned they're rather particular about that...
Here they are all skittery-jittering around the jar, occasionally running into each other and seeming to fight a bit:
Watching them was a little unnerving because, as far as spiders go, these things are massive.
Benjamin left them on our porch overnight and when we checked on them in the morning there was only one spider left standing—and that one only had six legs left! The spiders had literally torn each other apart overnight. You could see bits of spiders all over the jar—abdomens rolled around pell-mell while legs simply littered the ground. Several spiders had been sucked completely dry. The carnage was astounding.
So obviously while they're not particularly aggressive toward humans, they do tend to be a teensy bit on the territorial side. Evidently.
We still have a few spiders sitting on our front porch—new ones that Benjamin has collected—but these he's keeping in separate jars so they don't got all Lord of the Flies on him.
In other news, the kids went exploring in the back-backyard this afternoon and returned carrying armfuls of bones. They'd stumbled upon what was once a deer and now they're determined to piece together the entire skeleton. There are still more bones in the woods (even after going back for a second load this afternoon) so they're hoping to get back there again in the near future.
For now I just have, like, six gallon-size ziplock bags full of deer bones in my house.
It's a jaw bone!
Two jaw bones!
Zoë is slightly worried about whatever it is that's killing creatures in the back-backyard because not only are they killing deer, they're killing birds, too! She found a number of blue jay feathers near the deer skeleton. So clearly there's a creature lurking back there!