- Spiders are arachnids, NOT insects.
- Other members of the arachnid family include scorpions, mites, ticks and harvestmen.
- Spiders have 8 legs while insects have 6.
- Spiders don’t have antennae while insects do.
- Spiders are found on every continent of the world except Antarctica.
- There are around 40000 different species of spider.
- Most spiders make silk which they use to create spider webs and capture prey.
- Abandoned spider webs are called cobwebs.
- Most spiders are harmless to humans but a few spider species, such as the black widow, can bite humans and inject venom. Deaths from spider bites are rare however.
- An abnormal fear of spiders is called ‘arachnophobia’.
- Tarantulas are large and often hairy spiders, the biggest species have been known to kill mice, lizards and birds.
- Most tarantula species pose no threat to humans.
- The largest specie of tarantula is the Goliath Birdeater.
- Giant Huntsman spiders have leg-spans of around 30cm (12 in).
Some Spider Facts
There are approximately 38,000 known species of spiders. An estimated 1 million spiders live in one acre of land.
Spiders are vital to our planet. They eat harmful insects, pollinate plants, and recycle dead animal and plants back into the earth. They are also a valuable food source for many small mammals, birds, and fish.
All spiders are predators and many will eat other spiders. Scientists have found spiders date back to about 2 million years. Because spider’s skeletons are quite small and fragile it is difficult to find whole fossilized spiders.
Male spiders are usually smaller than females.
Spiders do not have teeth, so they cannot chew their food. Instead, they inject digestive juices into the innards of their meal. Then the spider sucks up it innards
When a spider travels, it always has four legs touching the ground and four legs off the ground at any given moment
Spiders have blue blood
Probably the most charming spider in history is Charlotte in E.B. White’s beloved novel Charlotte’s Web. She lives in a barn and saves the life of her good friend, Wilbur the pig.
The word “spider” comes from the Old English word spithra and is related to the German spinne, both of which mean “spinner
Hummingbirds use small sticks and the silk from spider webs to weave a nest for themselves.