Imagine a plant. Now remove the soil, for it’s not essential. In fact, an estimated one-tenth of all plant species have liberated themselves from soil and evolved into epiphytes—plants that grow on other plants. Although growing on others can seem parasitic, botanists have traditionally acquitted epiphytes of stealing from their hosts—except for the parasitic mistletoe—regarding […]
Since moving to Florida, I’ve had the opportunity to see some pretty enormous spiders. Golden-silk Orbweavers and Black and Yellow Argiopes are pretty large, and they’re spectacular-looking as well. Of course, not all our spiders are huge. But whenever I have the chance to get close enough to them for photographs, I’m always struck by […]
Scientists have uncovered two miniature spiders living on mountains in China’s southern region, one of which is among the smallest spiders recorded worldwide, according to a new paper in ZooKeys. Both spiders belong to the Mysmenidae family, which is made up of mini-spiders with eight eyes. “Although the family Mysmenidae is distributed worldwide, it is […]
Described by a number of media outlets as “the size of your face” a new tree-dwelling tarantula discovered in Sri Lanka has awed arachnophiliacs and terrified arachnophobes alike. But the new species, named Raja’s tiger spider (Poecilotheria rajaei), is likely Critically Endangered according to the scientist that discovered it in northern Sri Lanka. “I would […]
Nursery Spiders or what are those white things we see on roadside bushes ?? We take them for granted as just part of the local scenery, but several of our overseas guests have asked me just that this summer. The short answer is they are the “nursery” nests of a group of spiders native to […]
A new study on the island of Guam reveals that the near-total loss of native birds caused by the invasive brown tree snake has led to a huge increase in the number of spiders. During certain times of the year, arachnids on Guam occur at 40 times the rate of nearby islands where the snake […]
The European garden spider (Araneus diadematus), diadem spider, or cross spider, is a very common and well-known orb-weaver spider in Western Europe. Araneus diadematus also lives in parts of North America, in a range extending from New England & the Southeast to California and the Northwestern United States and adjacent parts of Canada.