A European garden spider recently stumbled upon a rather amazing solution to a serious problem. It wanted to weave its web across the top of a garage, but the angle of the roof was too shallow for anchoring. So it did what any industrious spider would do — it suspended a rock to anchor the bottom of the web.
These remarkable images were posted on Imgur by user Reverseloop, who writes:
Spider at my girlfriend's parents house, in their garage. Apparently it decided it wanted to build its web in the middle of the arch and needed something to counter balance it from the bottom. So, this clever spider grabbed a rock, dragged it up to the web, and suspended it from the bottom. Never seen anything like it before and thought it was pretty fucking cool.
Fucking cool is right. But seriously, are they really that smart — and strong? Redditor Jay180, who's an entomologist, say's it's not as uncommon as you might think:
Basically, the spider is looking for good anchor points. It pulls on all the lines to check for stability as it's making the web. As far as it knows that line is attached to the ground. That rock is just heavy enough to keep the line taut but not so light the spider would pull it all the way up. Had one do this with a heavy leaf outside my window. That leaf danced just above the ground for like weeks and drove me crazy every time the wind blew.
Indeed, this kind of behavior has been caught on film. Check out how this spider in Madagascar lifts a snail shell up a tree.
My respect for spiders has suddenly gone up an order of magnitude.