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2011-05-31 09:01:09

Decorative white silk crosses are an ingenious tactic used by orb-weaving spiders to protect their webs from damage, a new study from the University of Melbourne has revealed. The team, led by Dr Andre Walter and Professor Mark Elgar from the University of Melbourne's Department of Zoology, found that orb-weaving spiders respond to severe damage to their webs by building bigger silk crosses, but if the damage is mild they don't bother adding extra decoration. Professor Mark Elgar said web...

2011-05-25 15:05:00

SANTA MONICA, Calif., May 25, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Music From SPIDER-MAN Turn Off The Dark will be released on June 14th by Interscope Records. With 14 new songs co-written by Bono and The Edge for the Broadway production, SPIDER-MAN Turn Off The Dark, the album is produced by Steve Lillywhite. Songs are performed by the cast including Reeve Carney in the role of Peter Parker/Spider-Man, Jennifer Damiano in the role of Mary Jane, T.V. Carpio as Arachne and Patrick Page as the Green...

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2011-05-23 07:43:56

Researchers from the King Juan Carlos University (URJC) have carried out a research study published in Biological Conservation, which looked at whether spiders were more tolerant of human impact than other animals. The answer was no: arachnids suffer the consequences of changes to their landscape just like any other animal. "The abundance and number of spider species is negatively affected by the impact of many human land uses, such as habitat fragmentation, fire and pesticides", Samuel...

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2011-05-18 09:53:19

Scientists have used the latest computer-imaging technology to produce stunning three-dimensional pictures of a 49 million-year-old spider trapped inside an opaque piece of fossilized amber resin. University of Manchester researchers, working with colleagues in Germany, created the intricate images using X-ray computed tomography to study the remarkable spider, which can barely be seen under the microscope in the old and darkened amber. Writing in the international journal...

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2011-05-16 08:15:00

Climbing is possibly one of the riskiest things an adult tarantula can do. Weighing in at anything up to 50gm, the dry attachment systems that keep daintier spiders firmly anchored are on the verge of failure in these colossal arachnids. 'The animals are very delicate. They wouldn't survive a fall from any height,' explains Claire Rind from the University of Newcastle, UK. In 2006, Stanislav Gorb and his colleagues published a paper in Nature suggesting that tarantulas may save themselves...

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2011-05-02 14:44:51

By Jessica Nimon, International Space Station Program Science Office, NASA's Johnson Space Center The very idea of spiders in space brings to mind campy, black and white horror films involving eight-legged monsters. In actuality, it is a scientific investigation called Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus Science Insert-05 or CSI-05, in which researchers observe arachnid habits in a microgravity environment. This is the second spider investigation on the International Space...

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2011-04-20 11:53:41

A fossilized spider, uncovered in inner Mongolia, is thought to be the largest ever spider fossil discovered. It has been so perfectly preserved from 165 million years ago that scientists have identified it down to the exact species and that is was an adult female, BBC News reports. This specimen was uncovered from at a site called Daohugou in Inner Mongolia, also home to areas filled with fossilized salamanders, small primitive mammals, insects and water crustaceans. This fossilized Golden...

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2011-04-01 12:55:00

New research from the University of Cincinnati provides food for thought. The research examined how short-term and long-term hunger affected mate selection and aggression in female wolf spiders (Schizocosa ocreata) commonly found in the eastern United States and Canada. These female spiders are potentially aggressive and cannibalistic when approached by a courting male. The research is published in the April 2011 print issue of the journal, "Animal Behavior." It was carried out by George...

2011-03-02 13:27:25

Animals' capacity to adapt is a factor in how they are likely to respond to changing climate conditions. This conclusion of a new study published March 2 in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B is not especially surprising, says author Brandon Barton, but confirms the importance of accounting for local adaptation when determining the likely ecological effects of climate change. The work shows that the ability of the top predator in a well-studied food web to adapt to local temperatures can...

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2011-01-24 10:25:00

New research from the University of Cincinnati shows that when male wolf spiders are courting, they can modify their mating signals depending on the environmental surface in order to ensure that their message gets through. The researchers said that the wolf spiders are leaving little to chance when it comes to increasing their opportunities to successfully mate. Male wolf spiders adjust the modes of their signaling depending on the habitat on which they find themselves in order to improve...


Latest Spider Reference Libraries

Cobweb Spider, Theridiidae
2014-06-23 08:44:11

Theridiidae is a family that contains over 2,200 species of cobweb spiders, also known as tangle-web spiders or comb-footed spiders, which can be found throughout the world. This species received its common names from its tendency to build three dimensional, sticky webs and from the comb of serrated bristles on the fourth leg. It is thought that this family is the only to hold a high diversity of web types, including gumfooted webs, which are highly similar to those produced by spiders in the...

Wolf Spider, Lycosidae
2014-06-23 08:30:31

Lycosidae is a family that holds about 2,300 species of wolf spiders that can be found in a variety of habitats including woodlands, gardens, and moist coastal areas. Many species do require specific microhabitats, like montane herb-fields, but most species are nomads and do not reside in one area for long periods of time. Some species within this family build burrows that can have trap doors or open entrances, while others in arid regions build nests with plugged entrance ways, to protect...

Funnel Weavers, Agelenidae
2014-06-19 13:16:37

Agelenidae is a family that holds about 1,200 recognized species of funnel weaver spiders that occur throughout the world. These spiders build funnel shaped webs that trap prey in their complicated patterns, but they should not be confused with other families of spiders that build funnel webs like funnel-web spiders or funnel-web tarantulas. Funnel weavers can reach an average body length between .1 inches in the smallest species and .7 inches, although the largest species can reach total...

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2014-06-19 08:25:14

Sparassidae is a family that holds over one thousand species of huntsman spiders, also known as giant crab spiders and wood spiders, or as rain spiders or lizard-eating spiders in some areas of its range. These species are native to Australia but were also introduced to temperate areas throughout the world including China, Japan, and some areas of the United States, including Florida and Hawaii. They inhabit warmer areas and can often be seen entering human habitations and other shelters...

Crab Spiders, Thomisidae
2014-06-19 08:13:57

Thomisidae is a family that holds around two thousand species of crab spiders that can be found throughout the world. Although the name crab spider has been used to refer to a large number of species, it is most often used to refer to members of this family, especially the flower crab spider. Many members of this family have flat bodies that resemble those of crabs and others hold their two front legs in positions that crabs are known for or move in sideways motions as crabs do. Although...

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Word of the Day
lunula
  • A small crescent-shaped structure or marking, especially the white area at the base of a fingernail that resembles a half-moon.
This word is a diminutive of the Latin 'luna,' moon.
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