Contact: Robert Sanders
University of California - Berkeley
Caption: This shows a cross-spider, Araneus diadematus, in its orb web. Like many spiders, this species produces several types of silk: a stiff kind for the radial spokes of the web, and a more flexible one for the spirals. The flexible silk is easily deformed by the electrostatic charge of nearby insects, increasing the effectiveness of the web at capturing prey.
Credit: Photo by Victor Manuel Ortega-Jimenez, UC Berkeley.
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Related news release: Spider webs more effective at ensnaring charged insects