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The Florida Monsoon

Sexual Cannibalism

In fishing spiders, sex is violent. Males are often attacked by females during sex, and if killed, they’re promptly eaten1. There is little a male spider can do in defense, as females often exceed 14-times their mass2 in an intimidating display of gender size-dimorphism. This is equivalent to your “better half” having about 2,600 poundsContinue reading “Sexual Cannibalism”

Keeper of the raft

May 14 | Alafia River: Live oaks hang over the muddy banks of the Alafia. Their giant lateral branches rest atop the water’s surface, collecting the spring catkins and cypress cones that made their way to the river sometime in the past. A few feet below, the sandy bottom is littered with the shells ofContinue reading “Keeper of the raft”

The Moonflowers of Florida

The name moonflower is used to describe two species of flowering plants, Ipomoea alba (tropical white morning glory) and Datura stramonium (Jimson weed, and my personal favorite, zombie’s cucumber). Of the two moonflowers, only I. alba is native to Florida rivers (FIG 1)1, forming great white curtains draped from the canopies of oak, willow andContinue reading “The Moonflowers of Florida”

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