Spider Halts $15 Million Construction Project
No, this isn't something out of a science fiction movie, but the discovery of a new species has put construction of a new highway in Texas at a complete stand-still... And it's not a giant spider like in the movies that would halt our hearts much less construction projects! It's an tiny little dime-size blind (no, really) spider called the Braken Bat Cave Meshweaver and it has only been seen by humans twice... EVER, and the last time was some three decades ago.
You see, the problem is this little guy is endangered and that's how this 'David' of a spider can take down a 'Goliath' construction project. What I'm wondering is how these big burly guys even noticed a spider that size much less knew it was endangered and stopped everything... Maybe one of em is a closet bug-freak! No, but seriously here's how it went down, the highway that is:
A biologist discovered the eyeless spider, called the Braken Bat Cave meshweaver, after rain exposed a 6-feet-deep natural hole in the highway's median... She's with the firm Zara Environmental, a consultant for the Texas Department of Transportation on the project.
So, she just meandered along out there and decided the construction site was a good place to take a peek for endangered species and viola! Discovery? Dang, she's got some pretty good senses. I might have to hire her to look for buried treasure! Here's more:
To find a Braken Bat Cave meshweaver was a discovery of another kind altogether, akin to “stumbling on a new Galapagos Island in terms of the biological significance of the region,” said biologist Jean Krejca, Zara's president.
But get this...
After the spider was collected in a bottle, it was dissected for it to be identified, Krejca said. Collecting and killing an endangered species is allowed for that purpose if done by someone with a federal permit. No other spiders have been spotted in the hole where the one was found.