A giant spiderweb has been discovered by conservation officials in missouri that is large enough to ‘catch people if they walk through it at night.’
The Missouri Department of Conservation says it was spun by a spotted orb-weaver, which is a barn spider that builds webs late summer and fall.
These creatures have an abdomen with a pattern that resembles an upside-down spruce tree and they typically grown about a half of an inch – not including the legs.
The human-size web spans across two trees and officials note that it was likely created starting in the early hours of the day.
Francis Skalicky, media specialist with Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC), spotted the massive web on a trail in Springfield.
Orb-weavers, although large and hairy, are generally harmless to human and prefer to feast on insects such as moths and crane flies.
‘Many orb-weavers are nocturnal and have the peculiar habit of eating and rebuilding their webs each day,’ the conservation department shared on its website.
‘Webs are built at dusk and used for snaring prey during the night.
At dawn, the spider reingests the strands (along with moisture that has collected on it as dew) and recycles the nutrients in making the next web.’
MDC shared in the image of the intricate web on its Facebook page, which sparked a number of emotions among users.
Jennifer Duffy Russell wrote: ‘Those are the kind that literally ‘catch’ people if they walk through them at night lol.’
However, others are amazed by the stunning web.
Linda Coello shared: ‘It’s a Beautiful intricate wonder of Nature! Wonder how spiders can make their webs so perfect, their amazing spiders!’
Others joked that ‘these spiders here trying to get free satellite signal.
‘Even they don’t want to pay for cable,’ another Facebook commenter shared.
Webs help spiders catch their food in other ways, as one creature in the Amazon jungle uses the structure to soar through the air at lightning speed to capture its prey.
Launching from a spring-like web, it can accelerate 4,300 feet per second squared -over 100 times faster than a cheetah.
Velocities of 13 feet per second subject the world’s fastest spider to roughly 130 the acceleration of gravity (gs), or more than 13 times what fighter pilots can endure before passing out.
Slingshot spiders, known by the scientific genus name Theridiosomatid, build three-dimensional conical webs with a tension line attached to the center.
Footage from high-speed cameras stationed in the Tambopata Research Center outside Puerto Maldonado, Peru, reveal the slingshot spider pulls the tension line with its front legs while holding onto the main web structure with its rear legs.
When the spider senses a fly or mosquito within range, it releases, launching the web – and itself – toward its prey.
If the arachnid connects, it quickly spools its meal in silk and if it misses, it simply pulls the tension line and resets the web.
Categorised in: Bizarre
This post was written by Nadia Vella