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Spider Facts

Spiders have eight legs, fang-like chelicerae that inject venom, and spinnerettes that extrude silk.

Except for Antarctica, spiders can are on every continent.

There are over 49,800 species of spiders in 129 families, according to taxonomists.

Spider Facts for Kids

  • A Spider is an invertebrate
  • They are not insects they are arachnids
  • They have eight legs
  • There are over 49,800 different types of spiders in the world.
  • It takes on average about one hour to spin a web
  • The average home can have 30 spiders
  • Spiders help keep a lot of bugs out of our homes
  • Abandoned spider web are called cobwebs


Spiders are Arachnids

Arachnids have eight legs, two body segments, and no wings or antennae. Although many people think spiders are insects, insects have six legs, three main parts. Most insects have wings.

Types of Spiders

Black Widow Spider

In the United States, the Black Widow spider (Latrodectus bishopi) is the most poisonous spider, but only adult females are poisonous.

The female spider can be identified by the red hourglass shape on the underside of her abdomen. Black Widow spiders grow to 8-10mm in length.

The Females of the species have large venom glands, making their bite particularly dangerous to humans.

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Birdeater Tarantula Spider

The Goliath Birdeater (Theraphosa blondi) is a species of tarantula. It’s the world’s largest spider and native to South America, specifically Brazil and Venezuela. They have a body length – up to 13 cm (5.1 in) and weight up to 175 g (6.2 oz).

They are  members of the genus Avicularia, a tarantula family. An average female lives 15 to 25 years. A man’s lifespan is three to six years after maturity.

They prey on insects, arthropods, worms, and birds if they get the chance. 

Wolf Spider

The wolf spider  (members of the family Lycosidae) is a popular garden spider in the United States.

They are robust hunters with excellent eyesight. They are opportunistic hunters that do not spin webs. instead pouncing upon prey and then biting them.

Spider Diet and Food

Spiders prey mostly on insects and other spiders for a meal, but a few species also prey on vertebrates including frogs, lizards, fish, as well as birds and bats.

The prey is usually killed by venomous or digestive fluid secretions before eaten, although the feeding itself may sometimes be enough to kill the prey. A number of spiders have effective silk-trapping mechanisms that immobilize prey with sticky webs.

Most spider species are carnivorous, although some species, such as jumping spiders, supplement their diet with plant matter, including pollen, sap, and nectar.

Reproduction

Spiderlings are tiny hatchling spiders that immediately leave the egg sac after hatching.

They climb branches and produce silken threads when they reach the top.

The hatchling spiders are carried by the wind over long distances and colonize habitats far from where they were born.

It is called ballooning when hatchlings disperse.

When these baby spiders walk or balloon, birds, other spiders, wasps, and insecticides will eat them.

Spider Natural Predators

Their Natural Predators are Lizards, Fish, Birds, Centipedes, Spider wasp, ants, and other spiders. They are preyed upon by a wide variety of animals and insect predators.

Spiders are a great source for pest control in the home, and garden. They eat mosquitoes, flies, and other unwanted insects. 

Fear of Spiders

A fear of spiders is called arachnophobia, which is a very common phobia.

Some people with arachnophobia feel uneasy in any area where signs of spiders are visible. it might be a response to childhood memories of being bitten or a fear of spiders in general. 

How many eyes do spiders have?

Spiders don’t always have eight eyes. Although most spiders have eight eyes, some have only six, and some even have fewer. 

It’s always an even number!

How do spiders make silk?

It’s a watery gel of proteins that starts out in the silk glands and is funneled down by a tube that slowly tapers. Before the mix emerges from tiny spigots (devices that control flowing liquid) on the spider’s spinnerets, coatings are applied to the mixture (for stickiness and water resistance, for example).

Gel only becomes solid when stretched, so instead of being squeezed out like toothpaste, each spigot has a motor-like valve that draws it out.

Fibers produced by silk glands are used for a variety of purposes, such as draglines, snares, egg cases, and web support.

Spider Body Segments

Spider Claws

Spiders have claws at the end of each of their segmented legs. Some have two claws and some have three claws.

Those that have three claws are typically web-building spiders and the middle claw has a way to help them hang on to its web by using a tuft of hairs.

Spiders Body

Spiders have muscles and blood that circulates through their body. Their circulatory system doesn’t have capillaries as we do, but they do have arteries, a heart, and veins.

Spiders Fangs

The spider’s fangs are like needles, making them perfect for piercing the skeletons of prey and delivering venom.

They have glands that are located behind the jaws that contain venom or poison.

The Spider Web

Spider webs are made of silk

Spiders spin a web to catch their prey. Usually, insects such as flies, fly into the spider’s web. When the fly sticks in the sticky web, the spider will attack and inject venom using its fangs.

In most species of spiders, the female will spin webs. The male spider is usually a very active hunter, and not involved in any web-spinning.