Spider Mom TLC
November 29, 2018 12:29 PM   Subscribe

Ant-mimicking SE Asian jumping spider Toxeus magnus nurses its babies with nutritious spider ‘milk’ until they reach puberty.
posted by cenoxo (29 comments total) 15 users marked this as a favorite
 
no spider hate but i do need to say that the phrase "nutritious spider milk" will haunt me until the world ends in fire and ruin
posted by poffin boffin at 12:38 PM on November 29, 2018 [17 favorites]


If I had Jeff Bezos money I'd be drinking a tall cool glass of spider milk right now.
posted by Keith Talent at 12:43 PM on November 29, 2018 [5 favorites]


Spider milk
Spider milk
drinks it with her
spider ilk
posted by bondcliff at 12:50 PM on November 29, 2018 [23 favorites]


You know what this means, don’t you? Spider milkshakes!
posted by GenjiandProust at 12:54 PM on November 29, 2018 [4 favorites]


The part of this I find horrible is thinking about spider puberty.
posted by RobotHero at 12:57 PM on November 29, 2018 [5 favorites]


I'm not sure if I'm happy or disappointed that "spider milk" isn't milk in the sense of "almond milk."
posted by uncleozzy at 12:58 PM on November 29, 2018 [2 favorites]


The part of this I find horrible is thinking about spider puberty.

Something something "urticating armpit hairs"
posted by nebulawindphone at 12:58 PM on November 29, 2018 [7 favorites]


Also the very concept of spider puberty is extremely hilarious. Pimply spiders experiencing existential angst and dyeing their hair and listening to angry spider music.

Getting to the actual article I am delighted to see that the mechanics of pokemon go, namely the destruction of unwanted offspring to create food for the selected few, is drawn from actual sources in the animal kingdom.
posted by poffin boffin at 12:59 PM on November 29, 2018 [6 favorites]


I am looking forward to the best-selling The Spider Mother.

Also, "spiderling" would make a pretty good term of endearment.
posted by ckridge at 1:04 PM on November 29, 2018


Cockroaches, for example, nourish their developing embryos with a milky, protein-rich fluid.

great
posted by Sokka shot first at 1:07 PM on November 29, 2018 [4 favorites]


Epigastric furrow latte, anyone?

(I'm a person who finds milk in the from-an-animal rather than squoze-from-a-plant form pretty gross in general.)
posted by wellred at 1:22 PM on November 29, 2018


Do you want Vriska????????

8ecause that's how you get Vriska.
posted by radwolf76 at 1:36 PM on November 29, 2018 [3 favorites]


idk man plants with boobs are kinda weird but i celebrate our differences
posted by poffin boffin at 1:37 PM on November 29, 2018 [2 favorites]


I wonder how it compares to cockroach milk?
posted by sevenyearlurk at 1:40 PM on November 29, 2018


I saw this article, read it, and knew someone would post it on Mefi!
posted by annsunny at 1:40 PM on November 29, 2018


Wow! I’m absolutely blown away by this. Thanks for posting.
posted by dhruva at 1:51 PM on November 29, 2018 [1 favorite]


It's been a while since I was in a biology class, but I'm pretty sure this means spiders are mammals now.
posted by gauche at 1:54 PM on November 29, 2018


shaves spider, props upright BEHOLD A MAN
posted by nebulawindphone at 1:59 PM on November 29, 2018 [7 favorites]


"The team then analyzed the milk’s contents and found it was composed of sugar, fat, and four times more protein than cow milk."

Yum!
posted by jjwiseman at 2:03 PM on November 29, 2018


four times more protein than cow milk

All the quicker to stew up a fresh pot of bubbling hot spider cream, then. Pass the butter!
posted by CynicalKnight at 2:13 PM on November 29, 2018


INaturalist.org has an excellent photo gallery of Toxeus magnus, aka the “Black Ant Mimicking Spider”.

The spider is a superb mimic. In this photo, note how the spider’s large binocular eyes are on the front of the humped ant thorax, and the spider’s mandibles — held together in front of the spider’s cephalothorax — mimic ant head and jaws, complete with with a simple eye on the side. The spider’s front legs (long and strong in order to seize prey) also mimic ant antenna.

Salticidae are just amazing.
posted by cenoxo at 3:54 PM on November 29, 2018 [3 favorites]


Also the very concept of spider puberty is extremely hilarious.

OMG MOM STOP TELLING EVERYONE I DRANK MILK FROM YOU THE OTHER SPIDERS DON'T DO THAT GOD YOU'RE RUINING MY LIFE!
posted by numaner at 4:12 PM on November 29, 2018 [3 favorites]


If I had Jeff Bezos money I'd be drinking a tall cool glass of spider milk right now.

Spider milk -- for when your plutocratic palette is too jaded for another boring glass of octopus urine.
posted by paper chromatographologist at 4:32 PM on November 29, 2018


More about spider-ant mimicry: Spiders disguise themselves as ants to hide and hunt their prey [The Conversation, 11/13/2014]:
More than 300 species of spiders are known to mimic the outward appearance of ants, a phenomenon called myrmecomorphy.

Aggressively territorial, ants are typically avoided by several predators, thus making them the perfect creatures to impersonate. Most ant-mimicking spiders have a “false waist” and are covered with reflective hairs to simulate the shiny, three-segmented bodies of ants. They have coloured patches around their eyes to make their simple eyes look more like an ant’s compound eyes.

The spiders also behave like ants by waving their front pair of legs near their heads like antennae, and adopting an erratic zig-zag pattern of movement that is more like ants than spiders.
Beware of spiders in ants’ clothing.
posted by cenoxo at 5:37 PM on November 29, 2018 [3 favorites]


I love me some spiders! I go into a lot of basements (today I was in one where the floor joists were held up by actual literal tree trunks, complete with bits of authentic 19th-century bark on them!) and I meet a lot of jolly little spiders, mainly Pholcus phalangioides which I always think are rather festive, strung about like little ornaments in their scruffy, fluffy cobwebs. I try not to disturb them if I can help it; you know they're bothered if they start bouncing their webs at you. They are peaceful creatures who want nothing but to chill by themselves in a quiet place; a point of view I feel deep sympathy for.

No real point; I just like spiders. Spider milk is cool, thanks for showing me this. Spider moms are caring parents as a rule.

I am reminded of this ancient everything2 post.
MON:
lecture: advanced webweaving
activity: lying in wait

TUES:
lecture: water spout safety & general rain avoidance
activity: egg sac embroidery

WED:
lecture: integrating english words into your web. pig assistance provided
activity: 12-legged race

THURS:
lecture: scuttling
activity: biting

FRI:
lecture: consumption and efficient digestion of mate
activity: post-coital lunching

SAT:
lecture: teach your million tiny babies to parasail
activity: quiet peaceful dying in a corner
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 5:54 PM on November 29, 2018 [3 favorites]


During the first 20 days after emerging from their eggs, the hatchlings fed exclusively on their mother’s milk. Afterward, the spiderlings started leaving the nest to forage, but kept consuming the milk for another few weeks, stopping only shortly before reaching sexual maturity. According to Chen, this extended period of lactation—and the close mother-offspring interaction—is more similar to the process typically observed in mammals than in cockroaches, which only use their milk to nourish developing embryos.

Neat.
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The at 5:58 PM on November 29, 2018


So this means we can combine this with the giant cow and have giant milk-squirting spiders mooing around.
posted by The otter lady at 6:33 PM on November 29, 2018


spiders it is, then
posted by notquitemaryann at 7:46 PM on November 29, 2018 [4 favorites]


I just... this is the most crol I have been in some time and I don't know how to react anymore.
posted by Space Kitty at 9:02 AM on November 30, 2018


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