07 September 2012

And the spider marches on...

Dear readers,

In spite of the lack of regular (or otherwise) updates lately, we here at Yours for 8 Eyes are not in fact dead.  What we are though, is incredibly busy.  Two weeks ago I (Matt) and a soon to be new contributor (Jon) went to Cedar Point Biological Station in Ogallala, NE for a little collecting trip.  What we ended up with instead was Matt and Jon's Wild Spidery Ride.  Instead of bring back between 100-150 salticids as we had hope, we picked up nearly that many on our second day!  We even had some days where we were only able to collect for part of the day due to the weather, but still collected more than 100 specimens that day.  Long story short, we ended up returning with ~400 live salticids and several more preserved specimens.


Each row of vials represents a "new" species found at CPBS.

I can hear you thinking, dear reader, "what does this have to do with you and why haven't you been posting more anyways?"  Well, what this has to do with you is that our booklet (mentioned in earlier posts) will now contain more than 40 species of salticid from Nebraska and should be rife with beautiful color pictures of all of the specimens.  As for the lack of posting, lets just say 400 salticids is more than double the amount we've ever had alive in the lab and is turning out to be a ton of work.  Thankfully, we enjoy the work!

Salticus scenicus, an incredibly common species we encountered  at CPBS.

So what's to come then?  Well, the short term plan is to keep posting, hopefully on a weekly basis.  The longer term plan includes getting that booklet done and published, continuing to pursue arachnological outreach through this blog and in person, and even graduating!  It's going to be a busy little while, but stick with us and some exciting things should appear here shortly.