Thursday, June 07, 2012

Crab spider returns!

Okay, remember the crab spider I photographed with my iPhone the other day?

Well, I know what daisy she lives on, and when I passed her yesterday, I saw THIS:

She had just caught herself some kind of bee (it's not a honeybee)m but not only that, she had another little spider sitting backwards on her abdomen!

Crab spiders sit camouflaged in a flower, then ambush their prey. This poor little pollinator was still in its death throes. Or paralysis throes!

So what's with the little spider? I wondered if it was the male, as they are sometimes smaller than the females. Or is it a young'un? Or is it some other kind of spider? Does anyone know? It was just happily sitting there throughout the whole process!

The hungry spider turned her prey around (note the poor bee's pollen-covered legs)...

...then dragged it off behind the daisy!


  1. What a hideous fate for that poor bee! I'll wager that the smaller spider was a male of the same species, holding on for dear life as his virago lady love captured a snack.

  2. Yikes!!!!! What a very gory tale. Poor bee :-(

  3. Absolutely fascinating. Thanks for posting this!

  4. Ye gods, I'll be havin' nightmares about giant daisies and their occupants for evermore. Nanny will have to fetch the night-straps and the chains for me from the attic.

    When I redesign the universe pollinators will be little vegetarian teddy-bears with jet backpacks, spiders will be not seen and not heard and daisies will harbour nothing more worrisome than an invitation to sneeze.

  5. Wow, what a fascinating sequence! Great photos.

  6. Wow, I've never managed to capture a crab spider in the act like that. Found one with a hoverfly last year but it was not possible to get that sort of photo.

  7. Because of the little one's shape and similar patterning - my guess is it's a male - but it could be a baby. That's just my uneducated opinion.

    Personally, I find these pics fascinating, but I'm the child who had an large black and yellow garden spider for an "outdoor" pet. I use to catch large house flies on our enclosed front porch and throw them into his web just to watch him spin them up. I called him Boris!

  8. Fantastic set of pictures. Many people just think spider and don't get to know all the great varieties.

  9. Anonymous1:07 am

    Never seen a crab spider before ... pretty, for a spider. I think the piggybacking spider is a male. Just did a 'Net search and one was in the same position. The male is significantly smaller -- I wonder why? Beautiful photos as usual.

  10. I forgot: And don't come near me, Crabbie!

  11. Anonymous2:40 pm

    The cruel beauty and beautiful cruelty and mystery of Nature all captured in one shot. Evolution deosn't care, but it creates some awful wonders.


Thank you for all your comments, which I love to read!