Fish-eating spiders cover most of the world
Researchers review over 80 reports of fish predation by semi-aquatic spiders.
Spiders that prey on fish often more than twice their size live in every continent except Antarctica, a new study has found.
Researchers from Australia and Switzerland reviewed more than 80 reports of fish predation by semi-aquatic spiders.
They found spiders from up to eight taxonomic families attack fish, they report in the journal PLOS ONE.
Some spiders are known to have a varied diet, with many species supplementing insects with amphibians, reptiles, mice, and even birds and bats. But accounts of spiders catching fish in the wild are often anecdotal, come from very old literature, or originate from just a few locations.
To understand how widespread the behaviour is, the researchers compiled all the available literature on fish predation by spiders together with unpublished information from biologists and naturalists.