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I recently saw a spider like this in my garden. My kids and I looked it up in National Audubon Society' field guide. We think it to be either a Rabid Wolf Spider or Forest Wolf Spider.
Your kids are right it is a wolf spider. Yes probable a Rabid wolf spider because of the area that it was in and the pattern on his back. Hey a bee hive is free food for that guy.

I am sure that they keep all kinds of bugs off your hive as well.

I found this site.

http://www.duke.edu/~jspippen/arachnids/wolfspiders.htm
 
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