Short and Scary!

There is an old joke that goes like this:

Q:  What is worse than finding a worm in your apple?

A:   Finding half a worm.

So this is no joke…

Q:  What is worse than finding a half or whole worm in your apple?

A:  Finding a dead Brown Recluse in the bottom of your apple bowl!

I filled the bowl before Christmas with Granny Smith apples and have slowly been rooting and whittling away at them; using them up.

What a shock to empty the bowl and find one of these!  Dead thankfully.

Brown recluse (Loxosceles) spider legspan size

Image found here:

I assume it died because it couldn’t crawl out of the bowl.  However, questions remain:

  • Was it there and dead when the apples went in?  The bowl had been stored awhile.
  • Did it come in with the apples from the grocers?
  • Did it just find its way up to the table top and then into the bowl?

I am guessing the first.  The butler’s cupboard as we call it is dark and the items on the top shelves are rarely used.

Still it is creepy to contemplate


Hard to see in this very dark bowl.





But there she is!





What dangerous creatures have you unwittingly stumbled upon on?

34 thoughts on “Short and Scary!

    • Lynda says:

      You bet, Annie! I have realized this morning while putting the bowl away why I didn’t wash it out. I have a bean pot that directly fits inside this bowl and it is just completely dust covered on top of the lid. However, when I removed it from the bowl there was no dust at all… just a very shiny, dark void inside. I must have nixed the thought of washing and just dumped the apples right in. In future, even if it looks clean I will at least rinse it under hot water and wipe it dry!

    • Lynda says:

      Kate, no one believes me, but I saw a redback spider here on the property several years ago. Similar to a black widow, but the red is on the back and not on the underside. I dispatched her quickly. She doesn’t belong here! Also, I just found out that you have Recluse spiders there in Australia! A different variety from ours, but apparently can still inflict pain and skin damage. 😯

      • katechiconi says:

        Most of our spiders do bite, and it can be painful, but a few, like the redback, are potentially fatal. To be honest, there are so many bitey, stingy things here, I’ve stopped keeping track. Treat them all with caution and respect, and you can’t go wrong :-/

        • Lynda says:

          “…there are so many bitey, stingy things here…”

          You know, Kate, you have reminded me of something Bob said when we first moved here. You see, we have several types of wasp, large and small, Hornets, Yellow Jackets, and a tiny biting gnat called a “Noseeum”. Once in great frustration while working outside Bob was heard to grumble, “Jeez! Even the butterflies have teeth here in Alabama!” I’m guessing that for you, and us here, that glut in biting creatures has a lot to do with the heat and humidity. You would think that they would prefer a more temperate locale! And yes, caution and respect for the lethal types is good advice!

          • katechiconi says:

            Or maybe it’s the heat and humidity that makes the predators of these creatures extra aggressive – “Oh my lord, it’s hot, I’ll just grab a bite really quickly so I can retreat back into the shade” – which is why the extreme response has been developed. If you’re a 1 inch blue ringed octopus and your predator is an 8 ft saltwater crocodile, you develop a venom that acts in seconds to paralyse… Or something!

          • katechiconi says:

            Weeny! And it’s pretty, which is why tourists pick it up… and die. There’s no antivenin for it, the poison works in minutes and it’s a nasty way to go.

  1. Anita says:

    How about finding brown recluse spiders inside my empty canning jars? Or finding black widows living in my closet. Both events scared the crap outta me. I called an exterminator because I didn’t want to take any chances my grands might get hurt. They love to explore alot and play hide n seek under and behind things.

    • Lynda says:

      Anita, spiders do like the dark and undisturbed places in and around our homes. So do snakes. I once found a snake in my shoe. Apparently I had brought it inside with the shoe… shame on me for leaving them on the porch overnight!

      Hm, imagine how our spiders felt after dropping into your canning jars or my bowl and finding that they couldn’t make it back up the slick sides? Spiders: “AH! Maybe this wasn’t such a good idea after all!”

  2. shoreacres says:

    I’ve never seen a brown recluse, but I was bitten by one, and believe me — if I hadn’t found a doctor who knew what he was dealing with, I could easily have landed in the hospital. It got me just below my knee while I was working on a boat. I’ll spare you the details, except to say within four hours I couldn’t walk, and I still have the scar where I lost a bit of flesh. They’re nothing to mess with — thank goodness the antibiotics kicked in quickly. I had the whole deal — red streaks, swollen leg, excruciating pain. Wash out those bowls!

    • Lynda says:

      Lynda, I have seen the pictures on the internet, and I met a guy in the ER who had been bitten by one…
      The Guy: “I didn’t believe all the hype and my wife has been nagging me for a week to get to the Dr. Now I wish I had listened!”

      His arm was swollen, and the bite was the size of a half dollar. We could hear him behind the curtain, crying like a baby, as they worked on it. Nope, nothing to fool around with.

      NOTE: Bowls are washed, turned open side down on the padded mat on the shelf, and definitely will at least be inspected and rinsed before the next use! 😀

  3. Deb says:

    I’ve learned that while working outside,I wear gloves …. summer or winter…. came way to close a time or two to touching those black widows that are very plentiful around here.

    • Lynda says:

      Deb, I really do need to get into the practice of wearing gloves! For all sorts of reasons. Bob always does, and chastises me when I don’t. Perhaps this spider in the bowl is a reminder of how negligent I am? There really are a lot of creepy crawlies out there in the wilds of the gardens!

  4. dogear6 says:

    We started getting our house sprayed several years ago, between the black widow spiders and biting ants (like a black fire ant and very aggressive), it wasn’t worth the risk of getting bit. I’m glad it was dead when you found it!


    • Lynda says:

      Nancy, yes indeed! But mostly I am glad my finger didn’t find it when it lived. 😯
      I let the bug man spray around three sides of the house perimeter and let the chickens keep the north debugged. Mainly to keep those giant Palmetto, or wood roaches from coming in. It works! Inside no. I am too sensitive for that. Black fire ants! YIKES, the red ones here are bad enough thank you!

  5. Joanne S says:

    I agree with Nancy and am glad it was dead. Eeew. Found a black widow in the rarely used shed years ago. No one believes me, “not their habitat,” but I swear my husband and I found a brown recluse hiding under a pile of wood and stacked cement we had decided to remove from our property. Looked it up online and it had the ‘fiddle.’ Regardless, don’t like creepy crawlies in the least…

    • Lynda says:

      I think it is possible to find any critter (just about) anywhere with all the traveling and shipping of goods we do. Recall the rats/fleas on the silk road and the plague? Things get around with a little help from we humans. 😯

  6. Joelle says:

    Ok, well I thought the joke was funny – thanks for lightening the day – I will reblog out the information – it is awesome ! _ Joelle

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