New Records of Tarantulas Eating Birds

AphonopelmaTX

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Silva, João Vitor Campos, and Fernanda de Almeida Meirelles. "A small homage to Maria Sibylla Merian, and new records of spiders (Araneae: Theraphosidae) preying on birds." Revista Brasileira de Ornitologia-Brazilian Journal of Ornithology 24.1 (2016): 30-33.

Abstract
Spiders have a great potential to prey on small vertebrates. However, detailed events are sparse in the literature. In the current work, two detailed records of Tarantula predation in the Brazilian Amazon are documented. Preying begins by bird’s eyes, which eases the inoculation and spread of the digestive enzymes. Maria Sibylla Merian described the predation of a bird by a Tarantula in a scientific illustration, though her descriptions were labeled as fanciful. The current work makes a small homage to this 17th Century naturalist that challenged the prejudice of her time with her artistic and scientific production.

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AphonopelmaTX

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While we are on the subject of tarantulas eating vertebrates. Here is another good one...

Dias, et. al. Predation of the bat Pteronotus personatus (Mormoopidae), by a tarantula Lasiodora sp. (Theraphosidae, Araneae), in cave in northeastern Brazil Biotemas, 28 (4): 173-175, 2015

Abstract
The growing number of reports of spiders preying on bats over the past decade indicates that such events are more frequent than originally thought. The present note reports on the predation of a bat, Pteronotus personatus (Mormoopidae), by a tarantula spider, Lasiodora sp. (Theraphosidae). The event took place on the loor of the Urubu Cave in northeastern Brazil, and may be considered opportunistic, as in the majority of the cases of bat predation by these spiders. However, the high densities of both Pteronotus and Lasiodora in the cave suggest that this type of interaction may be relatively frequent.

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Chris LXXIX

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Well, after all Avicularia literally means birdeater :-s

If I'm not wrong Maria Sibylla Merian spotted one 'Avic' in Suriname in 1705 circa btw
 
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