"Remember your failure at the cave"

Posted by Graeme Lyons , Thursday 26 December 2019 20:21

Thor's Cave I went to today. Looking for subterranean money spiders was I. Instead, covered in mud, I became. Hmmm-mmm. Ha ha ha ha ha.

OK I thought writing an entire blog in the style of Yoda would be both enjoyable to write and hilarious to read. It's clearly neither. I found some cave spiders Meta menardi and some Nesticus. The usual Tissues and Heralds were present in the cave. I did get an unexpected lifer and a long overdue one at that. Porcellio spinicornis

I properly fell down a hole and got caked in mud. The cave wasn't as much fun as I was expecting.

However, the day was not lost as I did a bit of sieving on the way up. Thuidium is definitely one of the better mosses for sieving. I can't quite believe this but I got another lifer and a second species new for the year. At last a female Bathyphantes nigrinus but best of all was Saaristoa firma (below - that's a Meta menardi leg for scale). The first Staffs record since 1991 and a brand new 10 km square! That's 385 species for the year and five days to go. I have had 94 species of spider (just under 25% of the year list) in Staffs in a week, 17 of these are new for the year and 15 of these are lifers! Tomorrow I am off to a bog in Chester...

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