There are few creatures in this world that are feared by so many. In the eyes of people suffering from arachnophobia they always look gigantic. In fact, spiders do not feel like hunting for people. The truth is quite contrary – they run away from us. And if they can’t, they just curl up like a tiny ball pretending that they are not there.
#1 An elderly female
The longest spider to have ever lived on our planet was a female from the Giaus villosus species. It lived in Australia and died at the age of 43. her death was not caused by natural reasons, though. She was stung by a parasite warm and consequently died. The Giaus villosus spiders spend most of their lives in burrows and leave them only to hunt. Perhaps this is what explains their longevity.
#2 A gigantic web
The largest web-spinning spider is the female of Nephila komaci, with natural habitat in Madagascar, Tanzania and the Republic of South Africa. Their leg span is about 5 inches and the diameter of the webs they build could be up to 3 feet. The abdomen of the female could be almost 2 inches long while the male is just 0.3 inch.
#3 Venomous cave dwellers
One of the most venomous spiders in Europe is the European cave spider. Apart from spiders you can come across one in basements and sewers. Females form characteristic cocoons where they lay the eggs.
The bite of the spider can be painful and it might also cause swellings. It is comparable to a wasp sting. However, it does not pose a threat for adults.
#4 Water lovers
Diving bell spiders live in Europe and Asia. They can be found in still waters or rivers and streams rich in plant life. They can breathe underwater thanks to a bubble of air trapped in its hairy abdomen. They spend winters in shells of snails underwater
#5 Mummification of victims
Orb weaver spiders have got a rather unusual way of killing their victims. They wait for their prey in the corners of their webs. When a fly gets tangled with it, they wrap it up with the web (and this is when it looks like a mummy) and only then do they bite them injecting the toxic venom.
#6 Jumping at flies
The zebra jumping spider has got excellent eyesight and it uses its web as a shelter when the weather is bad and as a stash for its eggs and the young ones. It has got a peculiar abdomen and hunts by jumping – literally jumping on its prey – to poison it with its venom. It can jump the distance 25 times longer than its body.
#7 Death by sex
The females of black widows are 0.4 inch long. Males are half the size. When they copulate, the female happens to eat her partner. When the male finishes the act, he does a somersault and this is when his blood-thirsty partner catches him. This is how she gets access to a larger amount of sperm.
#8 Recycling the web
Orb weaver spiders eat the unused parts of their webs on pretty regular basis. They use them later to fix other webs or build new elements. Moreover, they can also tune the web. Depending on how the web vibrates they can figure out where they prey got trapped.
#9 Like ants
Spiders are really susceptible to the acid produced by ants. That is why you will never see these two close together. However, there is one spider who has disguised itself as an ant. Myrmarachne formicaria (one of jumping spiders) uses this camouflage also to deter birds, as they also do not tolerate ant acid.
#10 A spiky spider
Gasteracantha cancriformis is a spider that looks like a spiky crab. Scientists have discovered that its day last 19 hours. It has to adapt its body clock to the sun activity. A few hours before the sunrise it begins to spin the web and then remains motionless for 5 – 7 hours.
#11 Light like the web
One fiber of spider web of the length of our planet’s circumference would be only two pounds heavy.