These facts about spiders may help you understand more about one of the most common insects in the world. There are more than 60,000 different species of spiders worldwide. Here are some things we know about spiders
- Spiders are invertebrates.
- Spiders mainly eat insects. Some spiders eat other spiders. The largest spiders like the tarantula or Goliath bird-eating Spider, may eat frogs, small lizards or even small birds.
- Some spiders contain venom that can injure or kill people or animals. Spider venom usually attacks the nervous system or digestive system. Even though spider venom is very potent, spiders do not inject as much venom in their prey compared to snakes.
- The female black widow spider found in the United States is one of the most dangerous spiders to people. Its venom is 15 times more potent than the venom of a rattlesnake.
- The Brazilian Wandering Spider is also one of the most dangerous spiders in the world. It grows to a size of 5 to 6 inches (12 to 15 cm) and delivers a fairly large amount of lethal venom. Although the venom is lethal, scientists have developed an antivenom to save the life of a victim. With the medical cure to a Brazilian Wandering Spider bite, deaths are rare.
Facts about Spider Silk
- All spiders can spin silk. Spiders release the silk through tiny holes in the bottom tip of their body called the spinnerets. Spiders use silk for multiple purposes.
- Spiders make webs and tunnels from their silk, where they live or to help capture their prey.
- Spiders may wrap silk around their prey to trap them.
- Spiders spin silk to climb around or to escape danger.
- Spiders use their silk to protect their eggs by creating a cocoon.
Facts about Spider Legs
All spiders have 8 legs. Each leg has 7 segments. If a spider loses a legs. They are able to grow the leg back during a period when it molts (sheds its exoskeleton).
Benefits of Spiders
- Spiders eat a large variety of insect pests that bother us like ants, mosquitos, flies and cockroaches.
- Spider venom is currently being researched for health benefits. Scientists are studying the spider venom for possible medicines for breast cancer, lung cancer, brain cancer, Alzheimer's disease, muscular dystrophy, pain relief and treatment after a stroke.
Fear of Spiders
Many people are scared of spiders. Spiders are also very scared of people. The fear of spiders is known as arachnophobia.