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Home > Video Gallery >  The deadly mating game of the Wasp spider
Joe K

Joe K

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  • Uploaded: 2018-07-28
  • Using:  PowerDirector14
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The deadly mating game of the Wasp spider

Creator's Description

The Wasp spider, Argiope bruennichi, looks like no other spider in the UK. It mimics a wasp to deter predators but it is, in fact, quite harmless. The female's web is a large orb of fine silk usually built around 18 inches above the ground. It, uniquely, has zig-zag patterns of silk which reflect UV light attracting pollinating insects like flies, bees, moths and, at Coombe Heath pond, damselflies. Younger spiders have a circular zig-zagging pattern. Female wasp spiders measure an impressive 14-17mm in length whilst the smaller male measures only 4-6mm. The male spider waits on it's own web, a few centimeters in front of the female's web. When there is food in her larder, the male nips gingerly around the back of the female's web and helps himself to a free meal, unaware that the female is actually fattening him up! The male spider then tries his luck with the female by stroking her so that she raises her body. He then nips underneath for the business after which she promptly ensnares him in a silk web and feeds on him! Males wait until the female has moulted into a mature form and their jaws are still soft. However, luck is not often on the male's side and they get eaten anyway! That's nature for you! Filmed near Coombe Heath pond, RSPB Arne, Dorset UK. 26th July 2018. Equipment used: Canon 7D2 with Canon 24-105 and Canon 100-400 MkII lenses + tripod + a good dose of patience and luck. Music: www.bensound.com Produced by Joe Kaplonek ARPS with CyberLink PowerDirector 14.

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