Tag Archives: local population

In Memory of the 295 Florida Black Bears

Let’s have a moment of silence for the 295 bears that were killed in less than 48 hours this past weekend.

Each bear was taken by surprise, a victim in an unfair fight. We want to tell ourselves that we were relieved of these nuisance bears, that a threat to the fragile human species has been curbed for now.

But I think that we, humans, are the real threat. The answer is not bullets or arrows in the name of “conservation”, the answer is coexistence. But in true human form, the powers that be decided on what they would probably call a “quick fix” to the increased sightings of bears in neighborhoods. This bear hunt is setting an unsettling precedent that we will resort to extermination and further destruction instead of developing and building with the long term in mind for all species involved.  Continue reading In Memory of the 295 Florida Black Bears

Golden Silk Orb Weaver

Golden Silk Orb-Weaver Spiders  look like they could induce arachnophobia into the fearless, but worry not, these common little Nephila clavipes are basically harmless to humans.

Also known as Banana Spiders, you will definitely run into these gals if you walk along any densely treed pathway, whether it be near the beach or through the mangroves.

banana spider florida
A female Golden Silk Orb Weaver. The corpse of another Golden Silk female hangs by a thread below.

Once the heebie jeebies subside, examine the web of one of these creatures. Mature Golden Silk Spiders will weave a web that appears to be made of, you guessed it, golden silk! Their webs are extensive, semi-permanent structures, meaning they will rebuild a piece when it gets destroyed, but they won’t keep making new webs like other spiders do. So watch your heads, tall people, or you may come face to face with one of these beautiful spiders!

Gold Silk Orb Weavers will only bite a human if they are disturbed. The bite will sting, but will not be worse than a bee sting. There will be discomfort, redness, and maybe a mark, but other than that you should be fine. (An allergic reaction could occur, and if there are more severe symptoms, seek medical help immediately.)

golden orb weaver spiders banana spider
Two females, one in the foreground and one in the background, appear to float in mid-air. The tiny little guy is not a baby, but the male spider! They only grow up to 6 mm wide!