Although some of them eat the 'skeeters and such, something about spiders just gives me the creeps, ya know? Here's one that has a different way of hunting than most. You might find it interesting.
Photo credit: Andre Karwath
Forgoing a web for a more mobile mode of hunting, members of the family Scytodidae, the spitting spiders, constitute a particularly unique form of arachnid exceptionalism. Spitting spiders lack the silk-producing spinnerets common to more typical spiders.
Instead, these creatures live in forests and scamper around in pursuit of small prey items, which they capture by spitting a sticky, venom-infused mixture of fluids that immobilize the prey. The fluids are expelled from the poison glands and then fall upon the prey.
Next, the spider seizes the victim and injects a powerful venom that liquefies the insides of the prey before consumption. With a spindly appearance, the spiders have notably large venom glands to facilitate their copious spraying of venom and mucus.
The larger the prey, the greater the amount of mucus lobbed in its direction. The mucus is distributed through a head-shaking, spraying motion. Furthermore, these spiders have an interesting reproductive history to complement their remarkable hunting strategies. Females take two to three years to reach maturity and select males based on their pheromones. Mating takes place based on chance encounters, with care being taken by males to avoid being mistaken for prey.
Just what I need! A spider that actually spits at me. Bad enough when I get the web across my face and beard, now I have to worry about them spitting on me!
Coffee out on the patio this morning. Watch out for spiders, though!