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Spider That Builds Its Own Spider Decoys Discovered

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posted on Dec, 21 2012 @ 10:01 PM
Didnt know where to put it as biologists are not yet sure if this is a new species or not, but it sure is interesting

A spider that builds elaborate, fake spiders and hangs them in its web has been discovered in the Peruvian Amazon. Believed to be a new species in the genus Cyclosa, the arachnid crafts the larger spider from leaves, debris and dead insects. Though Cyclosa includes other sculpting arachnids, this is the first one observed to build a replica with multiple, spidery legs.

Scientists suspect the fake spiders serve as decoys, part of a defense mechanism meant to confuse or distract predators. “It seems like a really well evolved and very specialized behavior,” said Phil Torres, who described the find in a blog entry written for Rainforest Expeditions. Torres, a biologist and science educator, divides his time between Southern California and Peru, where he’s involved in research and education projects.

“Considering that spiders can already make really impressive geometric designs with their webs, it’s no surprise that they can take that leap to make an impressive design with debris and other things,” he said.

In September, Torres was leading visitors into a floodplain surrounding Peru’s Tambopata Research Center, located near the western edge of the Amazon. From a distance, they saw what resembled a smallish, dead spider in a web. It looked kind of flaky, like the fungus-covered corpse of an arthropod.

But then the flaky spider started moving.

A closer looked revealed the illusion. Above the 1-inch-long decoy sat a much smaller spider. Striped, and less than a quarter-inch long, the spider was shaking the web. It was unlike anything Torres had ever seen. “It blew my mind,” he said.

So Torres got in touch with arachnologist Linda Rayor of Cornell University who confirmed the find was unusual. “The odds are that this [species] is unidentified,” she said, “and even if it has been named, that this behavior hasn’t previously been reported.” Rayor notes that while more observations are necessary to confirm a new species, decoys with legs — and the web-shaking behavior — aren’t common in known Cyclosa. “That’s really kind of cool,” she said.

rest of the article here

posted on Dec, 21 2012 @ 10:02 PM
this would be awesome if it hadnt been posted like 8 other times

posted on Dec, 21 2012 @ 10:05 PM

Originally posted by dc4lifeskater
this would be awesome if it hadnt been posted like 8 other times

haven't seen it posted in the cryptozoology forum. but i will do a general search next time. thanks

posted on Dec, 21 2012 @ 10:06 PM
wow scary. they are creative and self aware....

posted on Dec, 21 2012 @ 10:09 PM

Originally posted by onequestion
wow scary. they are creative and self aware....

looks like they can count and that they know how they look like and how other species see them, didnt know spiders were this intelligent

posted on Dec, 21 2012 @ 10:14 PM
reply to post by Picollo30

more and more we learn....

posted on Dec, 21 2012 @ 10:24 PM
Already posted


and here

posted on Dec, 21 2012 @ 10:58 PM
Mm what an interesting find.It certainly seems from the two photos in the article that it is actually making a decoy rather than perhaps strengthening it's web and the results look spider like to us.i.e that's what we see in the shape rather than that's what the spider has intentionally created.

It did say in the article that this behaviour only seemed to be exhibited by spiders within a square mile so presumably they witnessed a fair few spiders doing this so you'd think they saw enough to suggest it was intentional rather than them just seeing this behaviour in the spiders.

This does suggest that the spider is self aware to a greater degree than we ever gave them credit for.I read a thread in here not that long ago about apparently researchers believed spiders watched us humans quite intently (mind you so would you,watching out for that rolled up

Self aware,intelligent,sitting watching us.......

Makes you

posted on Dec, 22 2012 @ 07:26 AM
Very neat story, and I hadn't seen it anywhere else. Easy to miss, sometimes!

In any case, quite a feat!

posted on Dec, 31 2012 @ 12:40 PM
I have an enormous fear of spiders and now they are building little models of themselves


posted on Dec, 31 2012 @ 02:31 PM
How interesting. Have always loved spiders. Thank you for sharing.

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