Lifescapes Gallery

21 / Sep / 2011
The Wolf’s Lair
Grassland Funnel Web Spider, Coorg Photograph: Ganesh H. Shankar Story: Rajesh Ramaswamy

The Wolf’s Lair

Meet a very different kind of wolf. This isn’t the two-legged kind that whistles at bus-stops as curvy specimens of the opposite gender pass by. Nor does he make eyes at them, though that would be a bit of an overdose, considering he has eight eyes of varying sizes. And eight legs to beat a hasty retreat if the object of his amorous attention decides to file charges. The Grassland Funnel Web Spider of Coorg, otherwise known as the Wolf Spider, is not someone you’d like to drop in to visit, especially if you are a sensible insect. His funnel-shaped home is built entirely of dry silk without the messy stickiness of other spider webs. For all that, the unwary visitor tends to slip on its smooth surface and get fatally entangled in its intricate threads.This, however, is one spider that’s not content to sit in his funnel, patiently waiting for home delivery. There’s a reason why he is called the Wolf Spider, and that’s because he is an excellent hunter who stalks his prey and often runs it down, holding it with his legs and weaving a silken shroud around its body before administering the fatal bite. His excellent eyesight (all those eyes help, I guess) and mobility allow him to be more successful than most other strains of Arachnids whilst hunting on the grassy fields, where you’ll see a lot of this free-running ground spider. He is a lone wolf who hunts mostly by day, though some, more poetic strains of the family are known to prefer moonlit dinners. While we’re happy that you now know enough to avoid wolf whistles on the grasslands, we’d be happier if you think twice the next time you pass by any funnel-shaped inn called ‘The Silk Route’ with a welcoming ‘Open for Dinner’ signboard hung outside.

We at Orange County have loved sharing this story with you, and shall bring you one every fortnight, as part of our Responsible Tourism Initiatives to raise awareness about the nature and culture of the environments we operate in.

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, September 21st, 2011 at 7:08 am and is filed under Arachnids . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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User Comments
  1. sethu ratna says:


  2. SHEEL M says:

    ‘The Silk Route’

  3. amit vij says:


  4. Ridhima Gupta says:

    Thank you for sending such beautiful pics and matter.I would love to come to Coorg Orange County again with my family soon.

  5. reshma says:

    Golden King at his silver abode

  6. faraz says:

    awesome pic….. truly miss ocr coorg

  7. Ayesha Goswamy says:

    Dear Orange County,
    I have just heard about your new water bottles which do not contain any plastic.congrats for being so eco friendly.
    Yours Truly,
    Ayesha Goswamy

  8. Sudatta Gautham says:

    We did our honeymoon in Orange county 6 years back and have been longing to visit it since then. However, the reason I am writing this email today is to convey how delightful are these lifescapes emails. I always look forward to reading them. The pictures, the narration and the mention of coorg – undebatably refreshing!!!!! Please make sure this email reaches the editors/creators of this email content 🙂

    • Orange County Resorts says:

      That was a wonderful mail to get in the morning (actually, I’ll settle for it any time of the day)and is one of the reasons the Creative/Editorial team continues to be so motivated to raise the bar constantly. While the nature and culture of Coorg are inspiration enough, it’s reactions like these that prove to be the wind under our wings. On behalf of the entire Lifescapes team, I’d like to thank Sudatta for those kind words, and hopefully we’ll be able to keep living up to the expectations:-)

      Rajesh Ramaswamy (Editor Lifescapes)

  9. lakshmi vasudevan says:

    Gorgeous! So much beauty and colour provided by a spider!
    My love and reverence for nature keeps growing!

  10. Praveen H Nagaraj says:

    Awesome shot !!! I love the clarity & the effect of light around the subject…….

  11. Krishna Barmaiya says:

    उषा की पहली किरण,
    ओंस से नहाया मकड़जाल,
    भोजन की तलाश अपनी आठों आँखों को मिचमिचाते द्वार से निकलती मकड़ी,
    कुछ नया करने की तलाश में निकला एक्सपर्ट कैमरामेन,
    साथ में हाई मेगा पिक्सल कैमरा,
    ऐसा संयोग किस्मत की बात है ………………………..

  12. pamela mukherjee says:

    Thanks for sending me the info & the beautiful pics…Waiting for lots of info & pics..

  13. Ashwini Patil ( Premium Indian Holiday,s Orbitz ) says:

    OmG! This is amazing….the best of pics I have seen ever….Bravo Mr. Ganesh S!!!
    🙂 Truly loved it!!

  14. Shibin Mathew says:

    On enlightened path..

  15. jyoti aggarwal says:

    Ganesh H. Shankar nice work in camera, good and clean pics

  16. Narayanan Raju says:

    Excellent photograph by Ganesh. Last month when I visited Orange County, I got into a hammock to have an afternoon nap. The moment I did that and opened my eyes, just a few meters above me was another “hammock” – this one by a huge spider which had woven a big web between the two trees. And bang in the middle of this web was the spider, either taking a quiet nap or waiting expectantly for a prey. I quickly got down from the hammock, in order not to disturb it. Photographs and articles such as these makes people more aware of their responsibility towards Mother Nature.

  17. Vikram Nanjappa says:

    They belong to the family Lycosidae which is a worldwide family of ground-living spiders.They are commonly known as wolf spiders because they run down their prey.This is the fifth dominant diverse family in India. A total of 126 species of 17 genera coming under 4 subfamilies are reported from India so far. Among these, the Hippasa species ( The Grassland Funnel Spider isa Hippasa species )belong to the subfamily Lycosinae

  18. Harisankar Kurup says:

    Excellent pic and narrative!

  19. Sujit says:

    Time after time – stunning photos and copy that “stuns”! You guys are the best.

  20. Ajit K Huilgol says:

    The spider seems to be glowing with an inner light! Hats off once again to Ganesh’s brilliance!

  21. Jayesh says:

    “Gold on Pearls”

  22. Pooja Srirsm says:

    Lovely description. A creepy crawly spider can be made to sound sooo fascinating!! 🙂

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