Looking for Spotted Orb Weaver Spiders on Penny Island

Wednesday November 5, 2014 Jenner CA.

I saw Ray across the river by Penny Island heading on down to the river’s mouth as I put  my boat in the water this morning, so I guess we were going to the River’s mouth area today. I joined him on the west end of the island and we continued on down to the mouth area.

The day was sunny with a breeze with some clouds in the sky. Nice.

Grebe on the water

We passed by these grebe on the way to the mouth area.russianriver


One of the smaller grebe had some kind of little fish it was trying to swallow, which it finally did. grebefish


Mouth area

We sat around the mouth area just watching the goings on for a bit. It’s closed up tight.rivermouth


The water level of the estuary is almost seven feet, which it sometimes levels out at. I’ll keep an eye out for that, to see if it does stop rising.

Sculpture lady

Then, we went down to the end of the river where we saw a lady stacking drift wood here and there. We chatted with her a bit,. Seems she was from Los Angeles and putting together some kind of sculpture.

We left her at it and passed by this group of cormorants taking it easy.cormorants


Biologists getting data

We could see some biologists up ahead so I went by to say hi. They were getting the data off devices attached to a buoy there. I chatted with them a bit, but they were busy doing their thing, so I left them and followed Ray to Penny Island where we wanted to see if we could paddle into the island yet.biologists


Paddling into Penny Island

I’m following this trail in the grasses to see if I can paddle into the island.island


The water level was just high enough to make it into the island where we sat around for a bit, it was so peaceful.pennyisland


Penny Island walk

While sitting there, we decided to go ashore on the island to see if we could walk around on any trails, or were they all flooded?

We first went ashore at this point.kayaks


We walked about fifty feet and ran into water, so turned back and got back in our boats and tried again at the spot to the right of this picture.islandwater


That worked. We had to carefully walk over some shallow water areas but we were able to walk up to the other end of the island.

Here’s Ray, stepping over some brush.ray


Looking for Spotted Orb Weaver Spiders

We were on the lookout for spotted orb weaver spiders, which normally stay out on their webs, but today, they were all hiding in leaves by their webs.

Here’s one of the spotted orb  weaver spiders hiding in some leaves. I think we found two of them today. Their abdomen is about three quarters of an inch across.spider


Bobcat leave their mark

The trail goes through these willow trees. We figure a bobcat put these scratches on the tree, maybe a few days ago. There is some older scratches higher up on the tree. There are a lot of these kinds of scratches on the island. We saw a bobcat on the island about a week ago.catscratch


We ran into water in some spots and had to use another trail, here and there.

Here we are arriving back at our boats.shoreboats


We paddled up the back channel of Penny Island, mostly drifting in the light breeze and turned into the little channel on the east end and headed on in for the day.

That was it for a fine paddle and a good walk on Penny Island.

Home for a much needed nap and that was it.

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