8 hours ago
Do you see that mountain range on the right side of the horizon? Those are the Huachuca Mountains, a "place of thunder." In the late 90's I was finishing up graduate school at Tulane University in New Orleans and discovered a new species of subsocial spiders on a trip there and promptly moved to Arizona. Spiders are generally solitary and highly cannibalistic and I was interested in the incredibly rare evolutionary transitions to fully social behavior, where extended families share in web construction and maintenance and cooperatively hunt for prey larger than they would ever be able to take down alone. Fully social spiders live their entire existence with overlapping generations in a single web, with virtually no immigration or emigration to the colony, leading to lower genetic diversity with colonies. In contrast, subsocial species live together for most of their lives in the natal web but leave around the time they mature. I wanted to know how the adults selected mates, the costs of inbreeding depression and the behavior evolved to minimize it. I would spend the next several years high up in Garden Canyon, following thousands of individually tagged spiders over multiple generations. Something magical happens when you spend so much time in a place, scanning and searching every likely spot for something as small as a spider over so many seasons and years. You begin to resonate with the place, it becomes part of you. Standing in the Celebrity Cave yesterday, I couldn't help but stare out across to my beloved Huachucas and miss that bit of myself I left behind.
Photo: @willbutt on the stellar Renaissance Man, 5.13a, The Dry Canyon, Arizona.
#skratchthesummit #skratchlabs #deuter #deuterusa #bluewaterropes #alwaysbetweenyouandtheground #instagramaz #igerstucson #az365 #arizonaphotographer #aacgram #accessfund #rockclimbing #climbingisbliss #climbing_photos_of_instagram #grippedmagazine #choosemountains #liveclimbrepeat #climbon
Thank you : tc.bukowski
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