Calf Bug-ropin’ with Cowboy Vera, Spider-style

I was bragging about Vera’s great skill in capturing multiple prey in minutes, so I thought I’d show you. Basically, whenever I put live flies in the spider’s vial (I feed her 3 times a week), she is off like a shot, immediately charging in to snare them.

She reminds me a lot of my cat that way.

It was tricky keeping her in frame and in focus, but I think you’ll get an idea of how spiders use their webbing to immobilize prey.

Also, I’m going to start doing everything “spider-style”.


  1. jrkrideau says

    I can see this turning into a televised sport as spider ranchers pit their best spiders in breathtaking contests.

    Excellent narration, PZ.

  2. kestrel says

    She really is very fast and in addition has a great style that would make any cowperson proud. Way to go, Vera!

  3. John Morales says

    So, I can either listen to PZ speak, and put up with the noise. Or I can mute the noise and miss out on PZ speaking. Such a choice!

    (Did the latter, obviously. But didn’t watch to the end, it was predictable)

  4. John Morales says

    Me, I’d put in at least one fly with its wings intact.

    Like, a bonus or something.

    (But, what do I know about Mad Scientism!)

  5. Sean Boyd says

    PZ, you are to be congratulated, sir! Never expected to feel bad for a fly, but you’ve made it happen.

    In seriousness, I thought you might’ve been exaggerating a bit about Vera’s…rather focused behavior. Now I think you were selling her short.

  6. eliza422 says

    She is a cool spider! So efficient. I like the 4th fly looking on as she is wrapping the 3rd one…I think he saw his doom coming!