Harnessing insomnia for the greater good

My wife and I tend to wake up far too early — just this morning she was complaining that she woke up at 3am and couldn’t get back to sleep. Me, I’m a lazy bones who snoozed until 4:30am.

But here’s a possibility: there are spiders that go hunting for sleeping prey at night, the Enoplognatha, or candy-striped spiders. All we need to do is get our boots on, gulp down some coffee, and drive out to a few places we know of that are frequented by hapless pollinators. Actually, maybe we should be checking out our backyard garden in late evening/early morning.

You know, you could help out, too. They’re pretty little spiders.


  1. Die Anyway says

    Spiders in the dark…an anecdote:
    I like to go camping and had a variety of lanterns and flashlights. They lit my way around camp at night and that seemed satisfactory but it meant I had to be carrying it in my hand. Eventually I bought a headlamp so I could be hands-free. The first time I turned it on at night I was surprised to see all of this sparkly stuff in the grass. At first I thought it was dew drops or maybe someone had a party and threw glitter all around. I bent down to take a closer look and discovered that it was spider eyes reflecting the light. Apparently the reflection is very directional. You will not see it with a handheld flashlight, only with a light coming from very near your eyes. And there were thousands of them. Now I almost feel bad walking around at night knowing that I’m stepping on hundreds of innocent little spiders.

  2. Pierce R. Butler says

    Nope, haven’t seen those spiders.

    Haven’t even seen Argiope aurantia for a couple of years now either. :-(

  3. magistramarla says

    At least you don’t have our sleep problems.
    My husband is an “early to bed, g-awful early to rise” person.
    I would prefer to stay up later and I get my best sleep 4-8 am.
    He also has sleep apnea, so I sleep with Darth Vader and his CPAP.
    I want total darkness in the bedroom. He’s careless about leaving lights on or electronics blinking.
    I have to get up several times a night but I worry that I will wake him and he won’t be able to get back to sleep.
    In spite of all this, we’ve been married 47 years and still love to cuddle up together to go to sleep.

  4. expatlurker says

    What is the utility of different spider markings? (Potential youtube video.)

    Asking for a friend.

  5. llyris says

    @4 magustramarla

    Don’t worry about waking him up – when he’s awake he isn’t snoring.