Welcome to September (and Labour day, today)! September is favourite month here in the Montreal area – the weather remains fantastic, the maple trees start to change colour, and migrating birds begin moving through. And best of all, the Academic term starts – for me, lectures begin tomorrow. For now, however, let’s see what discoveries were uncovered over the past week…
- Although spider bites are exceedingly rare, scientific research into spider venom reveals new secrets.
- Make room for spiders in your garden. Good work, Calgary Herald – a positive story about spiders.
- A terrific post all about Pseudoscorpions (thanks for tweeting that link, Malcolm Campbell). I’m thrilled to know there are other folks out there as obsessed about these critters as I am)
- Spider in da house. Take part in some arachnological citizen science!
- Ever want to be a spider? Here’s a game that lets you explore an abandoned house, as a jumping spider.
- An incredible spider photo to share with you, from Sean McCann. Here’s a pair of mating Hyptiotes gertschi (Family Uloboridae) (reproduced here, with permission)
- A taxonomic misunderstanding. A good (and important) rant.
- Speaking of taxonomy (and what DNA can reveal…), overlooked diamondback moth from Australia.
- Ten threats to Monarch migration – an excellent post by About Insects.
- Cicada-killing wasps. Run for the hills, cicadas!
- Advice on how to kill fleas (from 17th century). As Bug Girl points out, don’t try this as home. Yikes.
- More great stuff from #6SecondInsects, including this beautiful Membracidae
- An arthropod mystery is upon us… have a look.. WHAT THE HECK?
- Wallace’s beetles on FLICKR. So. Awesome. (thanks Max Barclay!)
- More great beetles: a little rove beetle monster (via Stelio Chatzimanolis)
- Flies are neat, too: Out of Africa: more strange flies. A post by my colleague Terry Wheeler.
- OK, let’s spread around the love. Ants are also beautiful (look, a moustache!), as Alex Wild shows us here:
- MOOC on Dinosaurs at the University of Alberta. If I had the time, I would take part in this one!
- How to write short. Although a longer read, a worthy one! (via Canadian Science Writers Association)
- Far is great, but so is near. In praise of boring, local field sites.
- Speaking of E.O. Wilson, check out this video from his Biodiversity Foundation. Yes, we do need to inspire kids (thanks Adrian for posting that video!).
- Over at XKCD, “Questions“. As Andrew MacDonald points out, many relate to Biology!
- And the tweet of the week goes to… Andrea Kirkwood:
- Art and Science: a wonderful blog to follow (thanks Amanda for that tip!)
- Insect Origami = WOW. (thanks Marianne Allenye for that link)
- How musical rhythm impacts learning and memory. Fascinating read!
- #Overlyhonestsyllabi: Dr. Dez writes a thoughtful and critical piece about this hashtag…
- Early career ecologists wish they had more quantitative training. I must agree! I had a lot, but certainly not enough. (thanks Laura Timms for that link)
- Speaking of Laura Timms – her stint as a post-doc with the Northern Biodiversity Program is over. Sigh. We’ll miss you, Laura. You write great papers.
- Falling, falling. (go ahead and click it…)
- Monty Python + Lego. Oh, I laughed.
- The world’s largest collection of belly button lint. (thanks [I think] for that link, Linda Campbell)
- Close to home, McGill’s Tomato Tornado! FUN!
4 thoughts on “Expiscor (2 September 2013)”
Chris, when I look at the mystery structure, I’m reminded of Hypochilus lampshade webs, even though they’re not as organized as this structure. And it kind of looks like cribellate silk on the cross-bars of the fence. Check out this William Shear paper and Plate 5 in Spider Silk (photo by Jonathan Coddington). What do you think? http://psyche.entclub.org/pdf/76/76-407.pdf
Leslie – thanks for the comment – interesting idea! I saw that you also posted your comment on WEIT – good stuff.
To be clear, I don’t think this is a Hypochilus web, but the similarities in the structure make me think this was made by a spider (of course, I’m biased that way!). All the features seen can be seen in various types of spider web. I hope we get to find out what it is before too long.
Right – understood, Leslie – others have also expressed that this structure is less insect-like and more chelicerate-like.