The Bedlam Farm Wolf Spider

The Wolf spider carrying her egg sac

Flo usually sits on top of the crate on the back porch. But this afternoon there was a wolf spider there instead.  And she was holding onto a sac of eggs.

I thought maybe she was just passing through, looking for a good hideaway to have her babies, so was surprised when I came back a while later and she was still in the same spot.

It takes a wolf spider one to two weeks for her eggs to hatch, so maybe she was out looking for something to eat.  Unlike spiders who make a web wolf spiders hunt for their prey.  And a female will walk around carrying her egg sac, looking for food, and even making repairs to the sac if it rips.

I imagine the crate is a good place for a wolf spider to hatch her eggs.  It has plenty of hiding places under and around it and both Minnie and Flo didn’t seem to mind her company.

But when I showed her to Jon, he uncharacteristically got concerned.  “The chickens will eat her,” he said.

I like spiders and I don’t kill them when they’re in the house, but I also don’t like to pick them up.  Especially a wolf spider who is protecting her eggs. So I got her to walk into an empty flower pot and from there she jumped onto the chair and stayed there. I made a little barrier around her with empty flower pots so the chickens wouldn’t see her, then I left her to her business and went about mine.

When I came home an hour later, the chair was on top of the table, surrounded by a barricade of succulents.

“Those chickens will jump up on the table to get her,” Jon said when I asked him about it.

Jon has evolved when it comes to spiders.  He used to just kill them.  In the past year or so, if one is in the tub (where they often are) he’ll ask me to get it out instead of killing it.

But this was a whole other Jon, worrying about a spider.  He’s probably online right now looking for spider treats.

By now our wolf spider may have decided it’s too much trouble living on the back porch.  Between the chickens trying to eat her and the humans building her a fortress, she may have decided to move on.

I hope not, I read that when the babies hatch the mother carries them around on her body for while till they’re old enough to go off on their own.  I’d love to see that.

The Spider Fortress

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