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      USC naturalist explains how nature prepares for winter

      COLUMBIA (WACH) - As we are getting into the fall season and temperatures drop, South Carolina's outdoor life is preparing for winter.

      University of South Carolina naturalist Rudy Mancke shared his expertise on plants and animals and how they adjust to the seasons with WACH Fox.

      At Riverfront Park, Mancke explained that butterflies migrate north in the fall until cold weather brings their lives to an end. He says spiders also die as winter comes, but they lay eggs that do make it through the cold weather; hatching into new spiders in the spring.

      Mancke says the biggest spiders are seen in the fall because that is when they grow to their largest size.

      Changing leaves are often a favorite fall indicator, and Mancke says those autumn colors may come earlier this year.

      "This has been a dry year, so a lot of trees drop their leaves a little bit early. But that's typical of broad-leaf plants in the fall of the year," said Mancke.