Smartphone photography is a little restrictive which actually makes it fun. Trying to get a shot that shouldn’t work is a real challenge. This morning I was down at the river and the sun was beaming down onto the bridge/ford and the rising steam made it look amazing. The sun is a little blown out, but again, that’s the restriction on a smartphone as its dynamic range (the difference between the darks and lights) it can capture is quite small.
As the saying goes, the best camera is the one you have with you, so I wasn’t going to miss an opportunity to capture this. Once the world returns to some sort of normal, keep an eye out for my Smartphone Workshops!
We’ve had a lot of rain over the past few days which is great as the River Odelouca has gone from dry to full overnight. Due to the the warm temperatures this morning we had a thick mist here in the hills.
Whilst out with the dogs I snapped a few photos on my mobile of some of the amazing cobwebs reflecting water droplets in the early morning sun as the mist was clearing.
I was taking a quick wander around the garden tonight and I spotted a small rounded spider crawling across a tightrope of silk.
At first I thought it was a European Black Widow but on closer inspection it was an equally cool Triangulate Cobweb Spider.
The scientific name is Steatoda triangulosa. Any spider belonging to the species of Steatoda is known as a False Widow due to the similar size and shape of a Black Widow. This species is not known to have any issues with biting humans but of course as with any spider a rare allergic reaction could occur.
I snapped this quick shot on my smartphone (more information continues below).
These eat other insects and spiders and can even be known to eat the only real problem spider here in Portugal, the Brown Recluse. It also eats ticks! It’s unusual to see one out in the open like this, but suspect I may have disturbed it as I cut back the large Rosemary that grows in the garden earlier today.
The name comes from the triangular patterns on its back. The female can grow to just 6mm in length.
If you live in the Algarve, you will know that the region was starting to get desperate for rain, also you will know just how much rain we’ve had in the last 2 days, particularly here in the northern hills where it has been heavy and persistent. I had a bet with myself yesterday that the river would get a kick-start and be running this morning. However, it was still dry and we even walked the dogs along our usual route along the river bed.
Imagine my surprise this afternoon when I stood outside the Quinta and could hear gushing water. I headed down to the river (its just over 400 metres away) and it is now in full flow, even over the top of the bridge/ford (Video below).
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