Thursday, March 5, 2015

6-Aug-2012 Wachusett Reservoir Gate 10, Massachusetts

Site location
A very short walk from Gate 10 brought me to a little headland sticking out into the eastern side of Andrews Harbor.  Much like at my 6 June sampling site across the harbor, a strip of eastern white pine (Pinus strobus) and a curtain of arborvitae (Thuja occidentalis) separated an oak-dominated forest from the reservoir.

Sample site
Tapping 50 cones, I collected a modest 7 spiders, all juveniles except for a microspider TBD.  The pine needle & oak leaf litter was much more productive, producing 23 spiders from 7 families and 3 species.  Although I found nothing novel in the sample, I did enjoy the chance to have a good look at the spinnerets on this juvenile gnaphosid.  I could almost believe that they were sea anemones.

Cones old (top) and new (bottom)
Anemone-like gnaphosid spinnerets
This marked the first day in the season that I spotted newly fallen white pine cones in the Wachusett Reservoir forest.  They were still quite sticky with fragrant resin, and made my hands and net smell nice.

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