What is a Spider?
For most of us spiders aren't our favorite creatures, but we must admit that they are fascinating animals.
Ok, what the hell are spiders insects or not?
Most people mistakenly believe that spiders are insects, they aren't. Even in the Spider-Man early comic books they refer to the radioactive spider that bites Peter Parker as an insect. But the fact is that insects "only" have 6 legs and their body is divided in 3 main parts, the head, thorax and abdomen. Also most insect species have wings and many have antennae.
Spiders belong to the same group of animals as the scorpions, mites, and ticks, they are part of the arachnid family.
Spiders, or arachnids are animals with 2 body segments the cephalothorax and abdomen, and 8 legs, they don't have wings or antennae and are not capable of chewing their food. But spiders do belong to the larger group of animals called “arthropods”, which also includes insects and crustaceans like lobsters, shrimp, crabs and barnacles.
Together they form the largest group in the animal kingdom, a staggering 80% of all animals found on earth belong to this group. The number of species in this group is over a million.
Spiders alone account for more than 38000 different known species, but scientists believe that there are much more species to be discovered.
There are so many spiders that a human is never more than 10 feet away from a spider, with an estimated 1 million spiders can be found living in one acre of land, tripling that number in the tropics.
Where do spiders live?
Well pretty much all over the world, since they are found in every continent except for Antarctica.
Do all spiders build webs?
Many spider species do indeed build webs to catch prey but there are also lots of other spiders who prefer to hunt their prey, and use their webs for other things.
If spiders can't chew their food how do they eat?
First of all spiders don't have teeth they have fangs, which are much like a pair of hypodermic needles used to inject venom to their prey.
Although they can't chew their food, they eat their prey by injecting digestive juices into them and then suck it up.
Did You Know?
The Alexandrine parakeet (Psittacula eupatria) got its name from Alexander the Great who exported them back to Europe.