WARNING: If you have arachniphobia, you might want to skip today’s post!
I mentioned in yesterday’s post (“Purple on the Prairie”) that the purple thistle flowers had some critters calling the thistles “home”. In today’s post, I feature those residents, the crab spiders of the prairie. Crab spiders are small spiders that resemble little crabs, pincers and all. There are 2 basic crab spiders found on my prairie hike, the bright yellow Ridge-faced Flower Spider (Misumenoides formosipes), and the greenish-white Smooth Flower S;ider (Misumena vatia). Typically, both these species are very reluctant to stick around when I begin photographing them. But the early morning cold temperatures (47F) and the heavy dew, both helped to keep the spiders from moving about. Here are a few of my favorite images:
Usually, I “accidentally” find these spiders on yellow wildflowers (sunflowers, goldenrod, etc.), making them very hard to find. But on the thistles, the task is made much easier! And did you notice the crab spider’s “pincers” in the last photo? Truly resembles a crab! :o)
Photographic Equipment Used:
- Canon 5D Mark 3 body
- Canon EF 180mm f/3.5 macro lens + Canon 1.4x TC
- Vanguard Alta Pro 283CT carbon fiber tripod, with 3 Pod H-3 ballhead (this is my new, lightweight macro setup)
- ISO 400 to ISO 3200 (ISO was changed, as wind and light required)
- Aperture f/11 to f/18 (aperture varied to achieve varying depth of field
- Shutter 1/15 sec. to 1/60 sec.