Netcaster.

The solar hot water cylinder is located outside, and a glance while walking past made the welcome discovery of a male netcasting spider, Asianopis subrufa, in residence.

These are fascinating spiders, their enormous eyes are up to two thousand times more sensitive than those of a jumping spider, and to avoid damage from the strong light during daylight hours, the retinas dissolve to be regrown the next night. This is only the second record made, in March 2016 one set up camp at the base of the moth sheet support where it snared a Crypsiphona ocultaria. At the end of the session it was carefully re-located to a nearby shrub. The species is described as being timid and gentle, and completely harmless to humans. The leg spread of the male above is more than ten centimetres.

More Odds and Ends.

Halfway through summer and the the worrying lack of invertebrate life continues, where once a walk around the garden trees provided a wealth of subjects for the camera, now it is is often put away without a new image on the card. Species that used to be numerous, eg. dragon and damselflies, jumping spiders, wasps, butterflies, native bees, etc. etc. are all largely missing for reasons unknown, spraying with insecticides in this sem-rural area at least can be ruled out, the decline must be more deep seated. A few isolated individuals have been spotted and photographed to keep the ball rolling.

Genus Holoplatys, displaying very effective camouflage.

Moth larva, species unknown.

A longicorn beetle, Coptocercus biguttatus.

Mating flower wasps, Subfamily Thinninae, winged male, wingless female.

A female probably of the same variety spotted walking across the concrete.

And another wasp, genus Callibracon.