Readers’ wildlife photos

Don’t forget to send in your photos!

Today we have three contributors, whose words I’ve indented. First, reader Dom in England sent some spiders:

Some nice big hairy spiders for you! These are probably all Eratigena genus, but they were formerly Tegenaria. In addition, in April the view that Eratigena atrica was, in fact, three species, was endorsed by the authority, the World Spider Catalog.

These are the biggest European spiders, and consequently the ones that induce the greatest panic in phobics. I photographed them with the iphone, and the flash made their little eyes light up.

Mars from reader Terry Platt in Berkshire:

Here is a recent image of Mars that I took on the 10th of October, from my observatory in the UK. The telescope used was a 317mm off-axis reflector that I built back in 1986. As you probably know, Mars is at its closest for some years and so it is a good time to take images.

The picture is centred on longitude 230 degrees and shows the region of Mare Cimmerium (the dark region near centre) and Elysium (the pale patch below centre). Mars was about 22.5 arc seconds in diameter at this time.


And some lovely hummingbirds from Ken Howard in Arizona; “Kelly” is his partner, artist Kelly Houle:

For your consideration.  Kelly and I maintain five hummingbird feeders around our home to support the migration given the backdrop of local severe drought, forest fires, and heat of this past summer and fall.  Attached are images from Sunday’s visitors – a juvenile male Calliope hummingbird (Selasphorus calliope) and a broad-billed hummingbird (Cynanthus latirostris).

The first two are Calliopes, the second two broad-billeds:


  1. GBJames
    Posted November 10, 2020 at 8:22 am | Permalink

    I’m not showing this page to my wife, although she would love the hummingbirds!

  2. Posted November 10, 2020 at 8:22 am | Permalink

    Great pictures! That first spider looks as though the photographer caught it doing something embarrassing. I wonder what would embarrass a spider.

  3. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted November 10, 2020 at 8:25 am | Permalink

    Astonishing set — it’s so cool you can get a pic of Mars like that on a DIY basis!

  4. Charles A Sawicki
    Posted November 10, 2020 at 9:05 am | Permalink

    Great mars picture!

  5. Posted November 10, 2020 at 11:31 am | Permalink

    A very interesting set!

  6. sugould
    Posted November 10, 2020 at 1:05 pm | Permalink

    How big are your big, hairy spiders?

    • Posted November 13, 2020 at 4:26 am | Permalink

      Not really that big. Leg span maybe 3 inches to top one but body size is still pretty small. One of them I evicted, the other was living on the window sill & went of its own accord. Maybe it eats woodlice that I find wandering about indoors!

  7. Posted November 10, 2020 at 11:04 pm | Permalink

    Great photos, Dom and Ken. Thanks!

  8. Posted November 11, 2020 at 2:02 am | Permalink

    More spiders please!
    LOTS of spiders!

    D.A., NYC

  9. Posted November 11, 2020 at 3:55 pm | Permalink

    I love the great photo of Mars!

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