Thursday, November 11, 2010

BBP Part 3 Goliath And His Friends

 Don't miss
BBP Part 1 Arbor Vitae And Rocks
BBP Part 2 Straightening The Wall

The evening of Wednesday August 11th it was time to move that pile of rocks we brought in in the BBP Part 1 post. The space was needed to dump fill dirt.

But first, Avery had been playing outside all day and gotten filthy. He was finally finished outside when it would only be about 20 minutes before Travis got home. I knew Travis would head right outside to work and Avery would go with him so I wasn't going to bother to clean him up. I gave him the option of going back outside or staying exactly where he stood and waiting until Travis got home. He chose to stay so I chose to take his picture.
Avery

I don't know what he's laughing at me for, he's the one with dirt all over his face.
Avery

He decided to sit instead of stand
Avery

I could not believe how blue his eye got when he looked up and got the light shining in them from the big picture window behind me up the stairs.
Avery

Time to move rocks.
backyard project

Obviously when you move rocks there are plenty of slugs
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A large pretty beetle
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A cricket
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As Travis moved more rocks...
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We also found a snake. A garter snake like the last one I posted except this one had a red-orange stripe and was a lot bigger.
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There he goes!
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backyard project,snake

Wait, there are two snakes. This one was smaller with a light greenish stripe.
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They kept heading for the leftover rocks when one would be moved they were under. Here we found them coiled together.
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Travis trying to catch him and flip him down to the dry creek bed.
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But they kept getting away and hiding together! Big slug there too.
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Once all the rocks were moved Travis was finally able to catch them and send them on their way.

And of course there will be spiders. After some research, I know these are either scary hobo spiders or the giant house spider. Giant house spiders can reach a leg span of 4 inches though and they're helpful. This is good to know. Hobo's apparently reach a leg span up to only 1.8 inches. This could totally be a hobo in that case since he was moderately sized. Not sure though.
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I actually have a picture of this one with a ruler right next to it. It's leg span was clearly 2+inches. He was very calm and just sat there. Helpful giant house spider, let's assume.
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Now, finally, it's time to meet Goliath for whom this post is named.

I called him Goliath immediately for a very real reason.

Which turned into a teaching moment since then Avery learned all about the story of David and Goliath.

But back the the spider.

He was not quiet and passive like the last spider, but very twitchy and active.

He was huge

He creeped me out beyond all belief.

He was massive.

I think what creeped me most was that he didn't look normal brown either, he was blackish. Like he's a vampire version of the brown ones or something.

I'm getting the heeby jeebies just typing about him.

Being so big, he was obviously a giant house spider and therefore not a threat, in fact he could eat hobo's for lunch.

But. Still. So. Creepy.

Meet Goliath.
backyard project,spider

Remember I said he was twitchy and active? Yeah, he was fast too. We're not flipping this rock fast because we know there are snakes under there. We're flipping it fast trying to catch Goliath. We had to work to catch him. No sitting around waiting to get smunched like the others. No, no, not Goliath. He would hide from one rock to the next and on this last rock he kept following it as it rolled! we had to roll it quickly several times to get him. And we had to get him. Or rather, I had to have him got. I'm sure nightmares would have ensued that night if I hadn't seen the sucker smashed.
backyard project,snake

After he was smashed I wanted a comparative picture and made Travis put his thumb down next to him. I realized how big his thumb in the glove was and put my own down as well to get a better gauge. Seriously, all smashed and curled up this does not do his size justice. His leg span was certainly more than three inches, so he was pushing the four inch limit of giant house spiders. My palm is three inches wide. Ew. So gross and creepy.
backyard project,spider

Tomorrow, back to business with the BBP.

4 comments:

Mom said...

oh, oh, oh, cringe......I was okay until the end when you said how big your palm was. I looked at my palm and just about passed out. I'm still shaking. I don't like the snakes either. The slugs aren't so bad because they aren't fast. They won't get you when you're not looking....or especially when you are!

Laura said...

I totally have the heebee jeebees! All I have to say is that I will never, ever come into your snake, slug, spider loving yard. :-)

Laura Marriott said...

That is so crazy! I was just thinking how lucky you guys are living in gorgeous-land and now I'm not sure I want to join you anymore...

HOWEVER, I realize that I have never done yardwork, much less on this huge scale that you guys are doing (tractor?), so maybe I just don't really know what's in my own backyard.

I'm so impressed that you could even hold the camera still!

Mindy said...

We have never seen such a big slug. He looks like he could eat the snake.