Yesterday Lu and Angus went out to the front yard. A few minutes later Lu came in towing an obviously excited Angus by the collar and announced that a wasp was on the front porch in the act of killing a spider. being an intrepid reporter I grabbed the camera and headed out. To be greeted by this.
That is a spider being killed by a wasp. As near as I can determine it's a Spider Wasp. And that's no small spider. It was at least the wasp's mass. One of those big, hairy, Shelob kinda spiders. Apparently it was no match for the wasp.
Lu saw the initial strike by the wasp. It came in from behind the spider, jumped him and took him by surprise. Stinging him to death or immobility in a bare second.
By this point the spider may or may not have been dead. I'm voting on the latter because I saw it's legs twitch every time the wasp went back and stung it again. Dead or not the wasp dragged the spider off the porch and into the gravel next to the concrete.
Every time the spider would twitch the wasp would pounce on him and work him over again.
I thought the wasp was going to drag him into a void in the concrete but we later saw that he'd drug him way over to the other side of the porch. This shot was post Angus investigation where the wasp decided that a large black dog was a bit more than he could handle. Just a few minutes later though, both wasp and spider were gone.
Neither Lu nor I had ever seen a wasp kill a spider before. These large spiders are common and if you'd have asked me I'd have sworn the wasp bad enough to kill one of these monsters was the product of a delusional mad scientist mind. It wasn't even a fight. That spider was badly over matched and taken unawares.
Nature is neither cruel nor capricious. It is reality. Some are predators and some are prey. Even predators can find themselves on the lunch menu quicker than they can comprehend. And there is certainly a lesson in there for us all. Carrying is fine but without training, awareness and a willingness to use your tools and will to prevail we run the same risk as the spider.
Don't be lulled into a false sense of security. There are wasps in the world. And they're hungry. Watch your back. Or better yet, hang out with another spider you trust to have your back.