Very rare spider (only two ever found) put a halt to highway construction

From Fox News:
A rare spider discovered at a construction site in San Antonio has shut down a $15 million project as federal and state officials consider ways to continue without disrupting the arachnid’s natural habitat. 
The spider, identified as a Braken Bat Cave Meshweaver, is an endangered, non-venomous species that lives in caves, has no eyes and is virtually translucent. Josh Donat, a spokesman for the Texas Department of Transportation, said the recent discovery is only the second time the species has been spotted in more than 30 years. 
"This is the second individual spider that's ever been found,” Donat told FOX 29. “It's not like we found 1 of 5,000 individuals in a species. This is the second time this species has ever been seen by human eyes.  The last time it was seen was 32 years ago in 1980 in a little piece of property not far from here." . . . .

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Blogger Gladorn said...

What is more important? Progress, or the endangered species?

Part of the problem is that there have been so few sightings of the spider. Few sightings does not mean an endangered species, especially in the study of Entemology. (Maybe Arachnology is the better term.) I'm willing to bet that there has been no specific "search" for this spider thus it's estimated population of one may be horribly underestimated. Thus, it's difficult to prove a negative with such a small study amount in place. So... I don't have an answer. Part of me screams "This is an overreaction!" The other half of me says "This is a valuable scientific event!"

On an aside, I was initially confused by what they meant by "cracks." I'm thinking bad asphalt, but when I watched the video I put two and two together and realized that this was a result of karst topography.

9/19/2012 4:03 PM  

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