The Spruce Fir Moss spider is a tiny mygalomorph (directly related to the tarantula) spider whose numbers are critically low to the point of probable extinction in the next few decades. This spider resides in the highest mountains of North Carolina, Virginia, and Tennessee living under moss mats situated on rocks and boulders in the midst of fir, spruce, pine and other trees. Because of a foreign species of adelgid which kills the trees in the area, there is not enough shade to protect the moisture in the moss mats that keep the the spiders alive. They are dying at an alarming rate. To add to the problem, loggers also take out trees, and tourist activity in their habitats destroy moss mats as well. Most people are completely unaware that we have these very special and rare spiders only in the Appalachian Mountains. Saving the spiders means restoring the food chain and the environment to it's natural state. By saving these spiders we are also saving the trees which are being destroyed. There is no way to know what other damage is being done by the destruction of the environment due to the adelgids. I propose that bringing attention to NC's very rare treasure (the little mygalomorph spider) by making it the state spider will help us to save it so that we can determine future uses for its silk, its venom, and also determine its role in nature and find out why these very unique spiders thrive in our mountainous regions.
Anne Baxter Johnson
This petition closed about 3 years ago
Making the Spruce Fir Moss Spider (a cousin to the tarantula) our state spider captures the attention of people so that they want to find out how to save the spider's environment, and that also...
Making the Spruce Fir Moss Spider (a cousin to the tarantula) our state spider captures the attention of people so that they want to find out how to save the spider's environment, and that also saves trees in the area thus protecting other species which may be harmed by the invasion of the Balsam Wooly Adelgid. Also, since we are unaware of the role this tiny (the size of a BB) mygalomorph spider plays, it would be beneficial to study its silk, its venom and other things about the spider. The strength of spider silk is widely known and spider venom is currently being studied for use in the treatement of Alzheimers, Parkinson's and stroke victims.