Incy Wincy International Rescue.

A few weeks ago as I was walking up the path to the shed I saw this ….

2nd October

an adult Pompilid Wasp had caught a juvenile Rain Spider, and after stinging and paralyzing it, was proceeding to drag it back to its nest. Once there -if it had not done so already – it would deposit an egg in the spider, and after around 20 days the lavae would hatch and proceed to eat the still-very-much-alive  spider inside out.

If you have watched any of the Alien movies you will know what is install for the spider.

As much as I really wanted to save the spider I have learned from painful experience that once a spider is in this predicament there is usually little one can do.

At that moment, one of our cats emerged from behind the shed and the wasp flew off, leaving the paralyzed spider on the path.

Now what?

Pick it up?

Don’t interfere!

Of course, if the wasp can’t have one spider it will track down and paralyze another. That’s nature.

So I decided to leave well alone and prepared to wait for the wasp’s return. However, after ten minutes the wasp was a no show. I waited another ten and still no wasp. After twenty minutes it was a fair guess the wasp was not coming back.

So … I picked up the spider and brought it into the shed.

As unlikely the chance of survival, there was at least a chance that the wasp had not deposited its egg in the spider.

6th October

After a day or two he seemed to respond a little but there was still serious paralysis caused by the venom and especially on his right side.

Here you can just see the spider is moulting, shedding for the first of several times. There is sign of recovery, but there is still chance the wasp may have laid its egg.


The extent of the damage eventually caused the spider to shed its right back leg, and the remaining three legs on this side are still not functioning properly.

However, this weekend sees the 24th day since the wasp attack and although looking a little thin,  and still not managing to eat yet, the spider is at least taking a little daily water and seems to be gamely hanging in there,

and, I am happy to report even tried to bite me yesterday, which I consider a  good sign.

Whether he will fully recover, remains to be seen.

Sometimes, being in the right place at the right time means one gets to play International Rescue.




30 thoughts on “Incy Wincy International Rescue.

    1. I am keeping fingers crossed for a full recovery for the spider, but there is still no guarantee, I can assure you.
      I suspect you might struggle a bit too!

      I am keeping him indoors at the moment – in a tray with a net over – as I am wary of another wasp tracking him.

      We will try to feed him this week.
      This task will fall to Ems – she is good like that.

      Liked by 5 people

  1. I’m not normally a fan of spiders, but wasps are real bastards, especially over here where they are a pest in some places. Part of me is wondering if the spider should’ve been put out of it’s misery, but the other part of me wants to see him live and be healthy again.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. I am always torn between the devil and the deep blue sea on such issues. But I reckon as I am also part of nature it was the spider’s good fortune I happen to be walking up the path at that moment.
      He still might yet succumb, but where there is life there is hope, so who am I to deny that hope, even if the spider could care less about my timely intervention?

      Liked by 6 people

    1. Aaah … Pompild wasps have one of the nastiest stings going.
      There is some sort of rating system – forget the name – that goes from 1 – 4 .
      The Tarantula Hawk, which is part of the Pompilidae genus rates almost a 4!.
      Apparently only a species of ant is worse.
      So …. yes, I am cautious around the wasp.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. I know exactly what you’ve done. For both your sake and mine, and the spider, I hope this works.

    Not sure if I would be holding it, though. Especially when it’s as big as that one obviously is.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Had my first wasp of the season in my study yesterday. I gave him a blast of Black Flag and was astounded that it lived up to all the advertising hype and literally knocked him arse over turkey. Instant knock down, but took him ages to finally kark it. Neither mercy nor compassion for wasps …

    Liked by 2 people

        1. My screaming doesn’t phase him at all.

          Don’t you find that there are times right after you post a comment and you read it, you just wish WordPress had an edit facility?

          Liked by 1 person

  4. I don’t kill wasps, if I can avoid it, but do the glass-and-paper route. Im slightly allergic to them and in an old house like this they are permanent residents, so for me it’s easier to put them outside rather than try to gas us all with Raid.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oddly enough although we get a variety of wasps around the property few venture inside.
      We have a solitary species of dauber wasp that occasionally comes into the house and tries to build a nest, but left undisturbed they are usually no trouble.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. We have one kind, a brown paper wasp, that thinks our house is their home. They will cheerfully build nests in the attic, under the valences on curtains, anywhere they can do it undisturbed. I’d not care, but they have a way of silently landing on my back and wandering, and if you annoy one it will defend itself. They do seem to prefer old houses that have attics and lots of hidey places. My mother’s house was always busy with them.

        So I do the paper under the glass route and it works a treat.

        Liked by 2 people

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