Animal Poachery

Rhinoceros Spider Earthworm

Ξ Poem Spider Notes Song ♫
© 1983..2009 by Andreas Wittenstein. Some rights reserved. (CC)

fly: The most common prey of familiar web-building spiders are flies, but other spiders specialize in beetles, other spiders, and even small fish and birds.

to alight: Unlike flypaper, spider webs are designed to be transparent and difficult to see by their intended prey, who as a rule alight by accident.

web: Different species of spiders build a fantastic variety of webs to catch their prey, including orbs, funnels, and lofts. But not all spiders are web-weavers: some use their line as a lariat (with glue in place of a loop), others build trap-door traps, and others hunt by jumping and chasing without a line at all.

spied: Most spiders have three or four pairs of simple eyes, of the which the pair in the middle in front, facing straight forward, are complex eyes with a lens and a retina resembling those of vertebrates in structure. However, web-building spiders usually sense the arrival of their prey by feeling the vibrations of the struggling animal on their weblines.

sidled: Spiders have eight legs on which they can walk in any direction.

her: Only female spiders build webs.

fiber: Most spiders can secrete silk from three pairs of spinnerets beneath their abdomen, adjusting the recipe as needed for different tasks, flexible and sticky for catching insects, tough and thick for draglines, or light and wispy for balloons when the youngsters disperse. Some spider silks are among the strongest tensile materials known.

bridle: Some spiders avoid the defensive weapons of their prey by bridling them from a distance with silk until they are rendered harmless.

fight: In the fight between a spider and a fly, it is most often the spider that wins. But the robber fly attacks and eats spiders, while the larvae of small-headed flies burrow through the spider's shell and consume it from the inside. Spiders also have countless other enemies, including wasps and birds.

bind: Weaving spiders wrap their catch in a cocoon of spider silk to tie it up, mummify it, and protect it from scavengers.

respired: Unlike insects, spiders breathe not only through tracheal tubules, but also through more-efficient book lungs, in which the air circulates between thin sheets of tissue perfused with blood.

bite: Almost all spiders have fangs with venom glands to paralyze or kill their prey. Weaving spiders bite their prey before they finish wrapping it up, not afterwards as this poem implies.

bile-spittle: Spiders have no molars or crop to grind up solid food, and even have filters that strain out solid food when they drink. Instead, they use the shell of their prey as an external stomach, spitting or vomiting digestive juices into the wound to digest it in place.

bide: The venom a spider injects when biting its prey acts as a preservative, permitting the spider to keep food around for leaner times. In contrast, the digestive enzymes it later injects rapidly decompose its food.

straddled: In many spiders, the legs are so long that the spider can stand beside its prey while straddling it.

siphon: When the interior of its prey has been properly digested, the spider sucks the liquefied material up through its mouth by dilating its stomach.

For more information on spiders, see the Wikipedia Spider article.

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