Spiders - Bob Palosaari
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Grass Spider

A grass spider sits upon its web, made colorful by reflections of the sun's rays. Arachnids like these spin webs into a sheet near the ground. The surface is non-sticky, but any insect walking across it sends vibrations to its keeper who then springs out of its funnel-shaped enclosure near the edge of the web. Agelenopsis aperta, as it is known to scientists, is a very fast runner, so it usually has no trouble chasing down its unsuspecting prey. This one seems docile enough just catching some sun on a warm morning. From a wildlife photography standpoint, it's best to try to achieve the same eye level as your subject to bring the viewer into its world. This can be a challenge with spiders so low to the ground. To capture this image, I carefully slid open a basement window at my home and found just the right angle. I like how all of the individual hairs on its long legs and brown body gleam in the sunlight, and how the spectrum of color on the web is apparent from this angle.

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