Spider 1, Ant 0


An ant likes nectar, but being a crawling insect, its ability to forage on many flowers is limited. That is, unless it is a flying ant, and can quickly move from one flower to the next. The problem, though, is that sooner or later, there will be a flower hiding a killer, a crab spider. 

A crab spider is an ambush predator that waits patiently on a flower for its meal to arrive. The spider grabs the prey with front legs and delivers a deadly dose of venom through its fangs. The venom’s effects are twofold: It paralyzes the insect; It digests the insect’s insides. The spider then uses its fangs like a straw to drink the insect’s insides.

A female crab spider (Misumena vatia) drinks the already digested insides of a flying ant.


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3 Responses to Spider 1, Ant 0

  1. birthe says:

    Amazing photo. Now a question: I thought all spiders had 8 legs, I can only see 4 and possibly a small 5th on the right side and a 6th on the left, partially obscured by the 2 front legs. Is this normal for that kind of spider?

    • Alistair says:

      Birthe, I count 8 legs, and other pictures taken at the time show them all.

      • birthe says:

        Thank you Alistair, glad to know that it does indeed have 8 legs even though I still can’t see all 8.

        Thanks again for your great photos, I enjoy them all even the ones of creatures I’m not particularly fond of, such as spiders

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