Twice yearly, for the past 10 years, there has been an unusual evening outing at Northwest Mississippi Community College. As many as 48 students have joined Instructors Patricia Miller (NWCC) and Gail Stratton (Univ. of Mississippi) and others on a spider walk. Typically, the outing has been to the NWCC farms and the students are often joined by Bud Donahu, Bobby King and Carol Cleveland. Students learn how to handle spiders safely and learn to recognize and identify several different kinds of wolf spiders.
Here are some highlights:
In the spring of 2004, as part of a collaborative project with the University of Mississippi, Northwest students will use GPS units to mark specific location of individual spiders. The spiders will be marked and on subsequent nights, we will see how far individual spiders have moved.
In the spring of 2001, Dr. Steve Reichling of the Memphis Zoo joined the NWCC students. Some of the spiders collected that evening became part of the spider display at the Memphis Zoo.
In the fall of 2001, we had the largest group ever! 45 students joined us for the spider walk.