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Web catches bug-lovers’ imaginations

Fri., Aug. 31, 2007

WILLS POINT, Texas – If you hate creepy-crawlies, you might want to avoid Lake Tawakoni State Park, where a 200-yard stretch along a nature trail has been blanketed by a sprawling spider web that has engulfed seven large trees, dozens of bushes and even the weedy ground.

But if you hate mosquitoes, you might just love this bizarre web.

“At first, it was so white it looked like fairyland,” said park Superintendent Donna Garde. “Now it’s filled with so many mosquitoes that it’s turned a little brown.

“There are times you can literally hear the screech of millions of mosquitoes caught in those webs.”

Experts differ on whether the web was constructed by social cobweb spiders or is perhaps a mass dispersal in which the arachnids spin webs to spread out from one another. They can’t even agree on the type of spider responsible.

Either way, it’s generating a lot of bug buzz.

“I’ve been hearing from entomologists from Ohio, Kansas, British Columbia – all over the place,” said Mike Quinn, an invertebrate biologist with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.


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