Underwater Spider

For those of you that hate spiders and think you are safe from them underwater think again. The Diving Bell Spider, Argyroneta aquatica, can be found in most small bodies of water in Europe and Asia. It is the only spider that spends most of its life underwater. Even mating rituals and catching and eating prey are accomplished underwater. Check out the video below to see the spider in action.

As you can see from the video, the spider “grabs” air from the water surface via fine hairs on its abdomen. It then pulls the air below the surface of the water to fill its webs which it normally spins around aquatic plants. Recently, Professor Roger Seymour and Dr Stefan Hetz concluded that the spiders can stay underwater for up to 24 hours. Their success is due to the web air bubble that they surround themselves with. The air bubble acts in a similar manner as the gills on a fish. Oxygen from oxygen rich water is freely absorbed by the air bubble while carbon dioxide is easily dissolved in the surrounding water. Interested? Why wait to learn more about this amazing little spider. Check out the full article at the BBC Nature News website.

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