Posted by The Sport Bookclub on Friday, March 24, 2018 12:15:50When Sydney funnel webs are spotted by visitors, their web-spinning behaviour often resembles that of a female spider.
However, Sydney funnel spiders are much smaller than funnel web-building spiders and are more often seen in the family Symmetra, which includes funnel web and funnel web building spiders.
But unlike funnel web builders, the spiderlings of Sydney funnel-webs are not often seen mating, with a female typically only laying eggs once or twice a year.
Instead, females often spawn in the spring when the soil temperature is warm enough.
“The female is probably just a very small spider,” Dr Weber said.
“You can probably see the tip of the abdomen of a Sydney funnel, which is just under the wing.”
But she is a very short spider, about two millimetres long, and that’s the only part of her body that she uses for her web-making activity.
“When females hatch, the male then burrows into the egg capsule of the female and builds a web-bearing structure out of silk.
However the web-bearing spider is not as powerful as a funnel web builder and it does not require as much of the male’s energy.”
If you’re going to have a male spider you’re not going to use a lot of the energy of the web builder,” Dr Weber said.”[It’s] really a very natural activity for females.
“When the spiderling emerges from the egg, it uses its long body to pull the web inwards with its head.”
So you can see this male will pull this very, very slowly, and then he’ll start to pull it back and he’ll pull it out with his whole body,” Dr Weaver said.
The web-pulling male then uses the web to create a web in the egg-laying female’s abdomen, which can be as long as a metre in length.”
There are a couple of different things you can do with the web: you can pull it into the web, you can also use it to hold onto the web,” Dr Dr Webers said.
Sydney funnel spiders also have web-binding hairs that help them attach to the web.”
We’ve seen them pull themselves in to the female’s web and you can get a web that’s very flexible, and it can bend around the web that it’s attached to,” Dr Weir said.
If you spot a Sydney spider you should take it to the local wildlife department to have it checked out for spider bites.
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