We saw 3 large Velvet mite while were out yesterday. Just so special to look at. These arachnids are a very important part of our environment as they belong to the soil arthropods in helping keep the control of the soil environment correct. They are related closely to spiders and tics. As larvae they attach themselves to arthropods such as grasshoppers. When they become nymphs and adults they live among the leaf litter. See: www.cirrusimage.com/Arachnid_velvet_mite.htm
for more interesting photos and information.