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Who dares to intrude

Who dares to intrude
Photo Information
Copyright: Willie Miles (willie) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1023 W: 61 N: 648] (2083)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2004-12-26
Categories: Spiders
Camera: Sony PDX10
Exposure: f/2.8, 1/50 seconds
Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
Theme(s): Araneae (Spiders) II, 50 points or more - 50 puntos o más [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2004-12-29 2:43
Viewed: 9422
Points: 58
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Baboon Spider ( Bobbejaanspinnekoppe) Family Theraphosidae

Body length up to 4cm; leg span up to 12cm

From light brown or grey in some species to dark brown or almost black in others.

Most like:
Lesser baboon spiders ( species Harpactirella), but the more common baboon spiders are larger. Often confused with the large hunting spider, (Palystes natalius) which enters homes frequently. These however have a more slender build and are more agile.

In the veld under stones and dungpats. They often build nests in clumps of grass. Sometimes found in houses and outbuildings.

This is the kind of spider that nightmares are made of. They have large fat bodies, and both the body and the legs are thickly covered in hair, making the spider seem even more bulkier than it really is, and giving it the most frightening appearance.
By spider standards, baboon spiders are particularly long-lived. Whilst most spiders live for only a year or so, baboon spiders have a lifespan of up to 25 years. They take between 8 and 10 years to reach maturity.
They spend most of their time either inside or very near their nests, which are usually silk lined holes in the ground, reaching down some 30 – 40cm. If alarmed near its nest the spider may rear up on its hind legs, with its front legs and fangs poised to strike downwards at its adversary.
When it adopts this formidable posture you can see its sharp, 5mm brown fangs, surrounded by reddish hairs.
The fangs can inflict a painful bite, but the bite is not dangerously venomous and presents no serious threat to humans

Found throughout the southern African sub-region.

Shooting Details
Found close to Mica in Limpopo Province, the day was very hot and humid +/- 43C.
I found a number of these silk covered holes in the ground and decided to explore a little. I took a blade of grass and broke the silk membrane covering the hole. See workshop photo.
Once I started exploring into the hole with the grass, I felt the tug as the spider grabbed onto it. Then I was able to gently lift him up to the base and get some shots. The specimen in the photo was actually a lot bigger than what is described in the notes. My estimate was that he was at least 3.5cm wide and about 8cm long.
At the slightest movement, he would immediately disappear in the hole again and I would have to start the process all over again.
To say the least, I really enjoyed the experience and intend to do this again to get some more shots for the TN viewers.

Workshop photo ( Hole in ground with silk membrane )

Shooting Details
Focal Length: 7mm
F Stop: F/4
Shutter Speed: 1/150 sec
Tripod: No

Main photo ( Baboon spider emerging from safety of his hole)

Shooting Details
Focal Length: 14mm
F Stop: F/2.8
Shutter Speed: 1/50 sec
Tripod: No

red45, mumek, mogens-j, sandpiper2, Luc, Esox, Lourens, Fisher, Callie, Janice, gerhardt, carper, Midi, JeanMichel, j_wyatt, honza has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To sandpiper2: Is the right forearm (spider's left) missingwillie 1 12-29 18:07
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • red45 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2636 W: 74 N: 9091] (31094)
  • [2004-12-29 6:53]

I like spiders but this one is little scary. Great pose, composition and details. Very informative note. As we can see men from SA are really brave [vide Japie post] :-)

Hi Willie.
Fantastic photo,beautiful spiders.

Happy New Year Willie.

i will leave the intruding to someone els...
these most be as big as a hand!at least with the legs.good shot with very good details on the jaws and paws.
good colours too.well done!

Great shot Willie.
Very good composition and pose, good details and a great note.
Excellent work.

Great Shot !

  • Great 
  • mumek Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 104 W: 0 N: 180] (853)
  • [2004-12-29 10:04]

Very good macro!Nice composition, very good detail and clors.Excellent note.

Composition: ****
Sharpness: ****
Color: ****
DOF: **
POV: ****

Great shot, very good compo.
Focus a bit soft.

What an excellent capture Willie. This spider is really defending its property and it is heavily armed too. Great colours and stunning sharpness - I cann't believe you did this with a camcorder. Well done and Happy New Year.

Impressive shot with a camcorder, makes some of the camera shots on TN look very ordinary. Some impressive fangs and a nice composition and light.

Is the right forearm (spider's left) missing?

Great note on your experience, very enjoyable reading. I was impressed by the spider's longevity, so I did some reading and it seems there are many spiders in the family Theraphosidae that can live 20+ years. So, not only do I get to see great pics on this site, but learn as well, what more can you ask for. Thanks Willie.

  • Great 
  • Luc Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1835 W: 301 N: 4287] (14767)
  • [2004-12-29 20:25]

Nice title, Willie, for a great presentation.
Great picture and an awesome note.

  • Great 
  • Esox Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 239 W: 20 N: 344] (972)
  • [2004-12-30 5:03]

Frightening shot.
Good POV, and impressive detail level.
Colours and composition as well.

  • Great 
  • japie Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1814 W: 100 N: 1904] (5187)
  • [2004-12-30 12:21]

Wow Willie, hierdie is pragtig! This is a fantastic POV and the quality is great. Those "fangs" is enough to give me nightmares. Excellent note as well

Very well done and thanks for posting. Happy new year to you and your loved ones.

Superb image, Willie. Fantastic macro. Great note.

  • Great 
  • miqra Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 140 W: 3 N: 23] (151)
  • [2005-01-01 9:53]

Fierce looking monster, excellent shot, very clear and well defined, well done!

  • Great 
  • Fisher Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1540 W: 309 N: 2234] (8915)
  • [2005-01-01 10:15]

Certainly wouldn't want him crawling on me. Excelent composition and educational note.
Well done.


  • Great 
  • Callie Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1101 W: 95 N: 2610] (7555)
  • [2005-01-01 12:06]

Won't you come into my parlour, said the spider to the fly?
It's the pretiest little parlour . . .
Wel Willie, this is really great. well done! Them fangs are beautifully depicted!
Beste weer? vie 2005!
For those interested, and really ready to cringe - I have a shot of one being handheld!, and yes, they can be as big a the palm of my hand!

  • Great 
  • Janice Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3277 W: 148 N: 6163] (18832)
  • [2005-01-01 20:56]

Ooo, scary. Not my ideal subject but this is an excellent shot of the spider in his lair. Your patience paid off too. Well done, Callie

Firstly, please allow me to wish you all the best for 2005, Willie. I have been away for a while and missed some of your shots, I have a weeks vacation left and might drop off the radar again.

This is absolutely stunning! The photo is way up on my favourites list. I love the spiders and this one is the king of 'em all. This is a masterpiece! Well done.

I judge by the colour that this one could belongs to the genus Pterinochilus (Golden baboon spider) There are 7 species in the genus. To ID the specific species one needs a microscope. :)

What a creep, wat een engerd Willie,
Very good shot, I have made some spider photos too, but only from small spiders not from big ones like this one, wow, what a thing, very good shot, good pof and dof an a good details in it, fantastic job

  • Great 
  • Midi Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 146 W: 24 N: 183] (2418)
  • [2005-01-09 9:09]

Brrrr!! I know this type of spider, we are not friends. When I was in Malawi, one day I found a big one in our kitchen. Very nice close up.

  • Great 
  • livios Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2150 W: 319 N: 4263] (16942)
  • [2005-01-16 18:30]

Willie, quite a scary shot. Excellent (and courageous) POV and note(as usual).

Congratulations for this one, Willie. The two photos plus the notes are very educational. Technically, it's very good, and I'm impressed by the details you show on the mandibles. Very well done!

  • Great 
  • puciu Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 469 W: 0 N: 16] (2631)
  • [2005-01-29 12:37]

Pięknie pokazany myśliwy, świetne macro.

  • Great 
  • sAner Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1455 W: 74 N: 1426] (4750)
  • [2005-02-03 14:34]

I love it! My girlfriend doesn't ;)! Great composition, sharp details and wonderful colors. It sure looks scary.

Good capture :)

Very good Shot.
check mine Spyder if you have time

Wow, this photo well gives me, what we call in the USA, "the willies". Pretty funny huh since your name is Willie. I'm really not sure where the expression comes from but it basically means to make your skin crawl and makes you shiver in fear that it might touch you! Personally I doubt that I would spend any time at all trying to get the spider to come OUT of the hole! So bravo to you for WANTING him to come out of the hole and taking such a great closeup photo of him/her.

  • Great 
  • Hisam Silver Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 18 W: 1 N: 22] (215)
  • [2005-02-19 16:23]

verry good photo sharp details, educational note

  • Great 
  • honza Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 533 W: 0 N: 720] (4197)
  • [2005-02-24 8:56]

Fantastic shot. Perfect composition and details, very good note. I like spiders, super.

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