|View across the preserve to a rare unmined sand hill|
Although today’s trees turned out to be in the Bonny Doon Ecological Reserve, which is closed to collectors, again we were able to collect all the cones we needed from the public side of the fence. Roadside margins aren’t the most pristine of habitats, but here in the early 21st century they are ubiquitous and so, in my opinion, are not to be sniffed at. They are an environmental reality of our day.
|Road margins, an ecological reality|
|The deciding fence line.|
It was chilly and foggy back at Felton Covered Bridge County Park, where we processed the cones, but this time we’d come prepared (hoodies!). And the afternoon proved fruitful; together we collected 12 spiders from our sample of 20 cones, all but one spider via the tapping method. And with the two of us working in tandem, we completed the task in about half the time it would have taken me to do it solo. This is no small matter, since cone peeling is a very time-consuming method of sampling.
|Ebo, with her long, striped legs.|
|Silver 'n brown Euryopis sp.|
|Clothilde Labrousse, pine cone spider collector.|