Many Kinds of Spiders
Fun Facts About How They Catch Prey!

JUMPING SPIDERS pounce on their prey! They can jump over 40 times the length of their bodies--which is like a 6-foot tall long-jumper jumping 240 feet!

TARANTULAS and TRAP-DOOR SPIDERS live in burrows where they wait for an insect or small animal to walk by.

FISHER SPIDERS have such long legs that they can walk on water without sinking! They hunt for tiny tadpoles, fish, and water insects.


Jumping Spider


Fishing Spider

CRAB SPIDERS, named because they look a bit like crabs, hide in flowers to catch bees and butterflies. Many are brightly colored, and may even match the flower they're hiding in!

WOLF SPIDERS are common, hairy spiders. They are fast runners, good at chasing their prey.

Charlotte and her babies were ORB WEAVERS, the spiders who weave the most beautiful, complicated webs, usually in open areas between branches or stems. When an insect flies by, it gets tangled in the web. The spider feels the vibrations, either by sitting in the middle of the web or on a nearby branch attached to the web by a trap line, and comes in to eat her prey.



Crab Spider

Wolf Spider

Orb Weaver

FUNNEL-WEB SPIDERS hide in the bottom of their funnel-shaped webs. When an insect lands on the top of the funnel, the spider runs out and pounces!

TANGLED-WEB WEAVERS spin simple webs made from a jumble of threads attached to a support. These are the kinds that we find in attics and cellars. When these webs get dusty, we call them cobwebs. One interesting tangled-web weaver is the Black Widow Spider. This species has a comb of hairs on its fourth pair of legs that it uses to throw liquid silk over an insect to entrap it.

SHEET-WEB WEAVERS weave flat sheets of silk between grasses or branches, and then crisscross threads above the sheet to form a net. When a flying insect hits the net, it falls into the sheet web. The spider, hiding beneath, runs in for the kill.





Funnel-web Spider

Black Widow Spider

Sheet-web Spider

Try This!

Choose a kind of spider. With some string or yarn, use your fingers as spinnerets to build a web. Spiders have a big advantage over us people; some of their silk glands produce sticky wet silk that can stick the ends of their web to branches, walls, and other objects. We have to use glue. Take a picture of some of your favorite webs and send it to us!