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Spiders and Camouflage

Some spiders take a different tack to catching insects. Sometimes the best message to communicate is no message. Or perhaps “disinformation” would be a better word.

Instead of spinning a large web to filter insects out of the air, some spiders lie in wait in a likely looking spot, then pounce on the unwary insect attracted by the “flower” they’re sitting on, or under. “I’m not a spider,” they seem to say, “I’m just a part of the environment.”

In looking for crab spiders, you often first notice a fly that’s just sitting still on a flower. A closer look reveals the spider holding the fly.

The goldenrod spider (Misumenta vatia?) in the left-upper image built a “flower” of salmonberry petals, then waited for a fly to visit the flower. The crab spider in the left-lower image “modified” an oxeye daisy. Such modifications are called “bowers.”
The Effect of Spider-mediated Flower Alteration on Seed Production in Golden-eye Phlox