Hungry hungry spiders

All these baby spiders hatched out over the last few days, and I had to start feeding them. I’ve got a lot of flies, I opened each vial one by one, and tossed in a surprised wingless fly. All the babies, even though they’re only two days old, had strung silken lines all over the place — baby’s first death trap! — and were waiting patiently, hanging upside down like the grown ups, and wow, were they ever excited when the first fly was snared!

Here’s a pair of Parasteatoda juveniles, literally seconds after I put a single fly in. They descended on it immediately. Baby’s first kill!

I’m about halfway through the feeding. It’s starting to go faster as I get better at manipulating massive numbers of flies. The Runestone line is all completely fed now, with the corpses of their twitching prey piling up. I think I’ll take a break and feed the remainder tomorrow.


  1. René says

    I’m familiar with PZ’s fascination with death as an evolutionary creative force. I’m curious as to whether he’s prepared to investigate his spiderlings’ ability to evolve.

  2. Rey Fox says

    Does this newfound focus on spiders mean that there won’t be any posts on the Seattle Kraken?

  3. fishy says

    I recently read a story in Asimov’s Sci-Fi where stolen technology was used to build a new world in a basement and the builder got to play God. The builder’s hope was to extract new technology from the incessant peril. It was all stick and no carrot.
    Beyond the Tattered Veil of Stars by Mercurio D. Rivera
    It’s a good read.
    What I want to know is in the past I have read a similar short story from the golden age of sci-fi. It was set in a laboratory and the subjects would spawn generations in minutes.