I was quietly reading the paper and having a coffee when Marilee noticed a dragonfly struggling in a spider web just beside me. I ran to get a camera and recorded 28 images of the spider securing the still alive whiteface over the next five minutes.

The sun was slanting across the double-paned window at an oblique angle, and there was a strong reflection of my hands holding the camera, which I was unaware of until later. It's amazing what an old version of Photoshop Elements can do to fix all that! I figure that Photoshop improved these images by about 75%.

The whiteface had blundered in the top left edge of the web, actually just outside of the orb portion, at about the 10 o'clock position. Here are some images that show the spider wrapping her victim and transporting it to the centre of her web.

1. The spider starts wrapping the whiteface, whose left wings are still unsecured.

2. All wrapped and ready to transport.

3. The victim still hangs from the main guy wire, but the spider has attached a thinner thread and is dragging her prey to the centre of her web.

4. Now at the centre. We have a spirit catcher hanging in the window, and this image shows its reflection.

5. Lunch time.

Tags: dragonfly, prey, spider, web, whiteface

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Replies to This Discussion

I usually set the dragonfly free when I see this type of thing happening...lol

Not possible in this case. The window is on the second floor of a split level at the top of a slope. I would have needed two long ladders!

By the way, I looked an hour later, and the prey's abdomen was all hollowed out. At 1:30, the web, prey and its creator had all been swept away by the wind.

Chris: I will be collecting ants along the Wilsey Road Wed July 12 for  a couple of hours.

Saw quite a few odes there last time.

If interested I could pick you up at your house about 10 am.

Will include a stop at the City Dump, a $50.00 bonus excursion at  no charge.

mothman@nbnet.nb.ca

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