Inside the ice house

A few weeks ago I did a blog about cave spiders in the Bothy at Parke and mentioned the ice house in the grounds as another potential site for cave spiders.

Well the nice folks at the Dartmoor National Park Authority have kindly changed the rusted padlock so I have now been able to get inside and have a look around. The floor of the ice house is rather like a scene from The Hobbit – tangled, wet, dark and hiding all sorts of evil …. so I didn’t venture too far from the steps but I did manage to find what I was looking for!

Ice houseThe entrance to the ice house – new padlock installed.

Cave spider 1I found six sets of cave spider (Meta menardi) egg sacs – here is one with an attendant female

Cave spider 2Here is the male – about 3cm in length

HeraldThe ice house was also home to this hibernating Herald moth – note the other tiny insect in the photo too – potential prey for the cave spiders!


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