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Zombie Spiders – Sci-advent – Day 10

A normal spider web on the left, compared to that built by a zombie spider (right).

Spiders and their webs are an excellent example of a predator, but can you enslave a spider? Well it seems that a species of wasp has mastered the art. The unsuspected spider is instructed by the parasite to leave its web behind and start building a new one with a very different architecture that will serve as a nest to nurse the larva of the wasp. The new web has a thick cover and a lower platform where a cocoon hangs. The cover protects the cocoon from rain for instance. Once the wasp hatches it then has the zombie spider as a first meal…