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lejun | all galleries >> Awesome Arachnids >> Simply Spiders >> Golden Silk Orbweaver Spider > Ruby-throated Hummingbird Caught in Golden Silk Spider Web
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26-AUG-2013 Lejun

Ruby-throated Hummingbird Caught in Golden Silk Spider Web

Copyright Lewis Scharpf

Observations about this entrapment:
Spider: Female Golden-silk Spider and her web (Nephila clavipes)
Bird entrapped: Ruby-throated Hummingbird (probably a juvenile)(Archilochus colubris)
Time of bird entrapment: about 15 minutes
The bird required human intervention to free it.
Method of release: Because the spider web was very high
and connected to two small trees, climbing the trees was precluded.
A garden hose with a gentle but direct stream was repeatedly directed
on the hummingbird and surrounding web which ultimately freed the bird.
The bird appeared to fly away quickly unharmed.
Co-observer: Roger Johnson
Birds including hummingbirds have been reported to be caught in spider webs.
The ruby-throated hummingbird represents the hummingbird species with the most cases of entrapment.
Over one-half of spider webs reported to entrap birds were of the genus Nephila (orbweavers)
It is now well documented that orbweaver spiders are opportunistic predators of birds, particularly hummingbirds.
Literature Documentation: "Birds Caught in Spider Webs: A Synthesis of Patterns"
The Wilson Jouurnal of Ornithology 124(2):345-353,2012
Daniel M. Brooks
Auburn, Alabama

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